Robin Leach, best known as the host of “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,” has died at age 76. The celebrity columnist’s family confirmed the news in a statement Friday.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Leach had a stroke in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and was hospitalized in Las Vegas since Nov. 21. Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist John Katsilometes said Leach had a second stroke Monday. Leach also worked as a celebrity columnist at the publication.
“Despite the past 10 months, what a beautiful life he had. Our Dad, Grandpa, Brother, Uncle and friend Robin Leach passed away peacefully last night at 1:50 a.m.,” Leach’s family said in a statement, according to Las Vegas Review-Journal. “Everyone’s support and love over the past, almost one year, has been incredible and we are so grateful. Memorial arrangements to follow. With love, Steven, Gregg and Rick Leach.”
Born Aug. 29, 1941, Leach got his start in media sending information about Harrow County School for Boys in Middlesex, England, where he attended school, to the local newspaper. He was hired at that paper, The Harrow Observer, at 15 when he graduated from school. He later worked at the Daily Mail and moved to New York in 1963, writing for Ladies Home Journal, People and New York Daily News.
After writing for publications, starting a magazine and becoming entertainment editor of The Star, Leach got into television in 1980 with CNN’s “People Tonight.” In 1981, he helped launch “Entertainment Tonight,” working as a correspondent until 1984, when he created “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” with Al Masini.
“Lifestyles” became a hit, running from 1984 to 1995 and making Leach a millionaire in his own right. The series focused on the lavish and expensive tastes of moguls, entertainers and athletes. The early reality show paved the way for shows like “MTV Cribs,” VH1’s “The Fabulous Life Of...,” “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” and more.