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Joan Rivers

(Credit: Virginia Sherwood/NBC)

(HOUSTON)— Joan Rivers was here in Houston just a couple of months ago, lending her talent and support to Komen Houston for Breast Cancer Awareness.

Now the executive director said she didn’t expect news of Rivers’ death.

Related: Joan Rivers, Celebrated Comedienne, Dead at 81

When Joan Rivers brought her star power to Houston just a couple of months ago, it was for a good cause: Komen Houston’s Impact Awards, said Adriana Higgins, executive director of Komen Houston.

“She was incredibly gracious and charismatic and had the entire room laughing as I’m sure you can imagine, sharing stories of inspiration and overcoming adversity in her life,” Higgens said.

Rivers was full of energy, and Higgins said she charmed the room.

There was nothing to make Higgins think fans would be mourning just a couple of months later.

“I was quite frankly surprised because she seemed to be just the picture of health at 80, 81, so I was quite surprised and saddened,” she said.

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Komen Director: Joan Rivers’ Death a ‘Complete Surprise’  was originally published on