Comedy Legend And Stand-Up Star Shecky Greene Dies At 97

The Las Vegas headliner was a regular on Johnny Carson's "Tonight Show."
Comedian Shecky Greene entertained audiences for decades with his nightclub performances in Las Vegas.
Comedian Shecky Greene entertained audiences for decades with his nightclub performances in Las Vegas.
John Lamparski/WireImage via Getty Images

Legendary comedian Shecky Greene died on New Year’s Eve at the age of 97.

He died early Sunday at his home in Las Vegas due to natural causes, his wife of 41 years, Marie Musso Greene, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

A beloved Las Vegas headliner for nearly six decades, Greene had entertained the masses since 1947 with stand-up shows and thousands of TV appearances.

He also famously opened for Frank Sinatra at the original Fontainebleau in Miami Beach and frequently guest-hosted for Johnny Carson on “The Tonight Show.”

Comedian Shecky Greene (left), shown here in 1975, appeared regularly as a guest host for Johnny Carson on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson." He was on the show 63 times from 1968 to 1979, according to IMDb.
Comedian Shecky Greene (left), shown here in 1975, appeared regularly as a guest host for Johnny Carson on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson." He was on the show 63 times from 1968 to 1979, according to IMDb.
Paul W. Bailey/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

When asked what it was like being married to the comedic all-star for so many years, Marie told the Review-Journal, “It was fun. He always made humor out of whatever he could.”

She added: “He made you laugh and feel good. It was a happy time.”

Marie Greene said a celebration of life for Greene won’t take place, per the family’s wishes.

Greene’s last ticketed performance was at Las Vegas’ South Point Showroom in 2011.

Greene was slated to be inducted April 2 into the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, College of Fine Arts Hall of Fame at The Theatre in Fontainebleau Las Vegas. UNLV representatives say the college plans to honor Greene posthumously, according to the Review-Journal.

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