Comedian Greg Giraldo dies after accidental overdose

 / Updated  / Source: E!online

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Hold the laughter.

Greg Giraldo died today, four days after being hospitalized following an accidental overdose of prescription medication. He was 44.

The news was first reported by fellow comic and longtime friend Jim Norton, who tweeted a photo of the two and the message, "RIP Buddy."

That was followed by a message from The Improv comedy club: "R.I.P. Greg Giraldo ... - One of the funniest MFers every to grace a comedy stage! Will be missed by all. So sad."

And one from Sarah Silverman: "Belly-laugh hilarious, prolific, good & kind. A thousand oys can't express"

A judge on NBC's Last Comic Standing, as well as a frequent guest on The Howard Stern Show and a fixture on the Comedy Central Roast circuit, Giraldo was actually a Columbia and Harvard Law School-educated attorney who strayed from his original path to school himself in the art of insult comedy.

And it worked for him.

"How cheesy is this dais? It's not a roast, it's a melt," he said during the recent David Hasselhoff roast.

"Have you ever not been drunk?" Giraldo asked the man of the hour. "You used to have a car that started when you talked to it, now you have a car that won't start when you blow into it."

The comic struggled with alcohol addiction over the years, ultimately revealing on the Stern show in September 2005 that he had been sober, minus one slip-up, for five months.

Giraldo made more than a dozen appearances on The Late Show With David Letterman and Late Night With Conan O'Brien, and did regular stand-up at the famed Comedy Cellar and Gotham Comedy Club in New York. His Midlife Vices was voted the No. 1 comedy album of 2009 by Punchline magazine and he was a guest on Jerry Seinfeld's The Marriage Ref last season.

In a 2007 interview with Cornell University's Daily Sun, Giraldo was asked why he abandoned the law to pursue comedy.

"Jesus," he deadpanned. "It's a very complex issue, but, you know, if you really read the New Testament close, I think you'd understand."

Giraldo, who was divorced, is survived by three children.

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