Laughspin regrets to report that Boston comedian Rich Ceisler has passed away. Ceisler, a comedy veteran of over 30 years, fell ill last month while performing on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. He came down with the rare Guillain-Barré syndrome, a disorder that causes the body’s immune system to attack the nervous system. He was flown off the ship to a hospital in the Dominican Republic, where he passed away Monday morning after suffering from pneumonia.
Ceisler was popular amongst comedians. A road dog, he also specialized as a corporate comic with his signature “Corporate Chameleon” show. Companies hired him to do a ‘talk’ for employees as one of several inane characters. He’s performed for corporations such as IBM, Pepsi, Virgin Airlines and Xerox. He worked clubs and colleges around the country as well as Canada, London and Australia. His connections in the comedy world were vast and he was adored by friends and fans. Prior to his death, a GoFundMe campaign was started to help pay for the med-flights that his insurance wouldn’t cover. From Aug. 1 to this morning, over $13,000 of the $60,000 goal was raised. People donated from $15 to $2,000 in hopes to help the ailing comedian.
One of the most influential men in comedy, COO of Just For Laughs Bruce Hills, was quick to pay his respects via social media. “Rich was an excellent comic, excellent person, excellent friend. We are rocked. So sorry,” comedian Tom Cotter commented on the GoFundMe page. Success may not always be measured in the laughs we get on stage but the friends we’ve made off of it. Rich Ceisler will be missed by many.
Rich Ceisler R.I.P. A very funny comic and a good friend. Gone too soon
— Bruce Hills (@Brucehills) August 4, 2014
— Robert Kelly (@robertkelly) August 4, 2014
You can see a sample of Rich’s stand-up below.