The Untold Truth Of Regis Philbin's Kids

TV legend Regis Philbin died at the age of 88 years old on July 24, 2020, according to a statement released by his family. While some might assume that his legacy is his 60-year-long television career, Philbin is also survived by his three children: daughter Amy from his marriage to Catherine "Kay" Faylen, and his other two daughters Joanna and Jennifer (who goes by J.J.) with his wife Joy Philbin. Regis also had a son Daniel from his marriage to Faylen, but he passed away in 2014 of natural causes. 

Philbin's family said in a statement after his death, via CNN, "We are deeply saddened to share that our beloved Regis Philbin passed away last night of natural causes, one month shy of his 89th birthday. His family and friends are forever grateful for the time we got to spend with him — for his warmth, his legendary sense of humor, and his singular ability to make every day into something worth talking about. We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss."

While Philbin was a pretty spectacular television personality, his kids were successful in their own right. 

Regis Philbin's son Daniel worked for the government

Regis Philbin's son Daniel was reportedly born with a spinal cord defect and had both of his legs amputated. He died at 49 years old due to natural causes, but he had a great career in the Secretary of Defense Public Affairs Office's Directorate of Public Inquiry and Analysis as a writer and editor, per The Inquistr.

According to a 2002 article from the Department of Defense, "Philbin was sitting at his desk in the Pentagon when the terrorist-flown airliner slammed into the building on Sept. 11, 2001. His first reaction was, 'Get the hell out of the building!' Once outside, he decided to see what he could do to help his office deal with the media." The article continued to explain, "That evening, while the building was still in flames, he returned to the Pentagon to help with the secretary of defense's press conference. He came back on Sept. 12 to perform additional duties. This bravery and dedication were not without cost, as he was hospitalized later for several days."

In 2002, Daniel was one of 16 people with disabilities honored for their outstanding contributions to the Defense Department. He said at the time, "The awards ceremony is a form of recognition by one's peers, which is probably the highest form of recognition. It means a great deal to me to be nominated and selected."

One of Regis Philbin's daughters followed in his TV footsteps — sort of

Regis Philbin's late son isn't his only child. As mentioned, he also has three daughters — Amy, Joanna, and Jennifer, who goes by J.J. Joanna Philbin is a novelist with a couple of books under her belt. Her Amazon author bio reads, "She started her first novel at the age of seven, but only got as far as the second chapter. She went on to receive her BA from Brown University and her JD and MFA from the University of Notre Dame. Joanna now lives in Los Angeles with her pug, Edie, and a lot of books waiting to be read on her bedside table."

J.J., or Jennifer Philbin, followed in her father's footsteps, but behind the scenes. According to IMDb, she started off in 1995 for MADtv and went on to write for Saturday Night Live between 1999-2000, credited with contributing to 17 episodes. She was a producer and writer on The O.C. starting in 2004. She was also a writer and producer on New Girl and then went on to create the sitcom, Single Parents. Her husband is Michael Schur, who wrote and produced episodes of The Office, and then went on to create and write Parks & Recreation, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and The Good Place. Not much is known about his daughter, Amy Philbin, as she doesn't have an internet presence.

Regis Philbin had an optimistic outlook on fatherhood

It's clear that Regis Philbin raised some highly successful and productive children, with one of them even going on to be one part of a Hollywood power couple. Then again, even if his children didn't write books or create network sitcoms, Philbin's parenting skills were obviously as on point as his broadcasting ones. He told Esquire in 2005, "It's a tricky piece of business, being a father. Each child is different, has a different sensibility. But you love them all and want the best for them. If only they could understand that that's what it's all about — having the best for them. Even though they can't see it your way, hopefully, one day, they will."

All in all, it appears that Regis was very beloved by his family. His wife, Joy, told Parade of their marriage in 2011, "There's just something about Regis. There's always something new on the horizon, and it keeps our lives active and fun. I'd rather be with Regis than any other person in the world." While it's sad to lose an icon like Philbin, his family is definitely mourning his loss even more.