'Real Housewives of New York City' Editor Peter Gamba, 63, Dead from Coronavirus Complications

RHONY producer Andy Cohen paid tribute to Peter Gamba, the Bravo show's longest-standing editor, calling him "the show's life blood"

Peter Gamba
Photo: GoFundMe

Peter Gamba, one of the editors who helped shape The Real Housewives of New York City since its 2008 premiere, died on April 1 due to coronavirus complications. He was 63.

Bravo announced the sad news on Thursday, dedicating RHONY‘s season 12 premiere to Gamba, who they said, “made the show what it is today.”

Andy Cohen also honored Gamba on Watch Watch Happens with Andy Cohen.

“Yesterday we lost someone very special to the Real Housewives and Bravo family,” Cohen, 51, said on the late night show. “Peter was the longest standing editor on The Real Housewives of New York City and the show’s life blood. As you know by now, our editors are vital to the success of our series. He cut the very first episode of New York Housewives back in season 1. For years after, he called people in to chuckle at material he found.”

He went on to note some of Gamba’s favorite moments over the years — including Luann de Lesseps and Bethenny Frankel’s “Tell me it’s not about Tom / It’s about Tom” exchange, Tinsley Mortimer tearful fit over her eggs with mom Dale Mercer, de Lesseps’ tumble into the bushes in Mexico and the fan-favorite Life Is Not a Cabaret episode, in which she gazed at her poster in Miami while her costars wondered why she had yet to bring them the truffle fries they ordered.

“Peter loved those scenes. He loved the ladies and he loved the show,” Cohen said. “He was the rock of post-production of RHONY. He’s going to be missed by everyone who knew him, and his sense of humor and passion for his work will ever be remembered. We are sending our love and gratitude to Peter’s family. Thank you so much.”

Peter Gamba

Gamba — who also worked on Long Lost Family, Supernanny, and Frankel’s Bravo spinoff Bethenny Ever After — is survived by his wife Jeanne, and daughters Michelle and Julia.

Barrie Bernstein and Lisa Shannon, two senior members from RHONY‘s production company Shed Media, also paid tribute to Gamba in a statement to BravoTV.com’s Daily Dish.

From that very first episode, Peter set the tone of RHONY — establishing the comedic pace and infusing the show with its sense of humor,” they said. “Early on, he created the infamous soundtrack and style that so hilariously shaped [Alex McCord and Simon van Kempen] scenes. He mined footage for those side eyes that punctuated all the best asides. He lived and breathed the essence of what makes these women funny, as brought to life by the editors like him that spend countless hours bringing the footage to life.”

“There was nothing like watching a scene that he cut and made his own, putting his sense of humor into it,” the statement continued. “He loved to make people laugh and he did it well. Peter cared — he was proud and humble. He delivered and he left his mark. His edit bay was a refuge for anyone seeking counsel, a moment of quiet or a much needed escape. He had a heart of gold and was a devoted, generous person who would drop anything for a friend in need.”

Bernstein and Shannon have since started a GoFundMe for his family. It’s already raised nearly $65,000 of its $75,000 goal.

“Our hearts are filled with your kind generosity and knowing the difference that Peter made in your lives. It was too soon for him to leave us, but we’re better for who he helped us to become,” said Gamba’s wife, Jeanne.

As of Friday, more than 6,200 people have died from coronavirus in the United States, according to a New York Times database, with at least 244,228 people diagnosed with the disease.

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