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Joyce Brothers Dies: Top 10 Facts You Need to Know

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Legendary celebrity psychologist and advice columnist Joyce Brothers is dead at age 85. Her daughter, Lisa Brothers Arbisser, announced the news.

Here’s what you should know about her…

1. She Died Today in Fort Lee, New Jersey

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Despite being a New York City native having been brought up in the Queens borough of the city, Brothers had lived in neighboring Jersey for many years.

She was a graduate of Far Rockaway High School in 1943.


2. She Got Her Start on The $64,000 Question

Before she was famous, Brothers triumphed on the famous game show in 1955, becoming the first female winner. The win propelled her to stardom.

Her specialty subject was boxing, something with which she was not familiar with until, being a “voracious” reader, Brothers’ became student of the sweet science, to impress her husband, her original choices were home economics and psychology. Her expertise led to her being the first female to commentate on boxing match, a Carmen Basilio and Sugar Ray Robinson on CBS in March 1958.


3. She Landed Her Own TV Show in 1958

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The Dr. Joyce Brothers Show launched in 1958 on a local New York NBC affiliate. The network recognized the hit and picked up the show nationally. It later became Tell Me, Dr. Brothers, and later Ask Dr. Brothers. Prior to this she had been a co-host on Sports Showcase, as well as beginning to appear on many chat-shows, such as The Jack Benny Show.


4. She Interviewed The Beatles in 1964

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According to Stevie Stevens, who photographed The Beatles on their first US adventure, Brothers’ held:

…informal conference with the Fab Four early on in their USA careers – on their first-ever trip “across the pond.”


5. Her Good Housekeeping Column Ran Four Decades

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Brothers was also a legend in print. Her widely read column in Good Housekeeping launched in 1963. Her syndicated newspaper columns appeared in 350 daily newspapers across the world.


6. She Was a Frequent Guest Star on Popular TV Sitcoms

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Brothers appeared on Frasier, Taxi, Happy Days, Saturday Night Live, Married With Children, The Nanny, Moonlighting, and many more. Here are some of her more memorable appearances:


7. She Was the Ninth Most Frequent Guest on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show

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Brothers was Johnny’s guest nearly 100 times.

Here appearances on chat shows continued after Johnny’s retirement, here’s a memorable appearance on Late Night with Conan O’Brien in 2000:

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8. She’s Holds Ivy League Degrees

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Brothers earned her B.S. in behavior and personality in 1947 from Cornell University. She got her Ph.D. in psychology in 1953, at Columbia.

She served as an instructor at Hunter College prior to having her only child in 1953.


9. She Lost Her Only Husband in 1989

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Joyce Bauer, age 19, married Milton Brothers on July 4, 1949. He was a med student who went on to a career as an endocrinologist specializing in diabetes. Milton died of cancer in 1989. Joyce never remarried. She said of his passing:

I have never really experienced grief before. And although the pain was enormous, I became much more sensitive to others.


10. She Played a Part in the Sexual Revolution

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Brothers wielded her celebrity role to broach topics previously considered inappropriate for public discourse, such as menopause and homosexuality.

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