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O'Brien pays tribute to Ed McMahon

June 23, 2009 |  6:24 pm

Conan O'Brien, host of NBC's "The Tonight Show," paid tribute to former "Tonight Show" sidekick Ed McMahon, who died early today, during the opening of his Tuesday night show.

"This is obviously a very sad day," O'Brien said to the audience. "It is impossible I think for anyone to imagine 'The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson' without Ed McMahon. Ed’s laugh was really the soundtrack to that show. For 30 years Ed played his part perfectly, he played it with effortless joy, and sitting alongside Johnny, Ed was an indelible part of what I think is the most iconic two-shot in broadcasting history. There will never be anything like that again."

O'Brien also showed several vintage clips of McMahon and Carson together and also showcased a clip of McMahon guesting on his former "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" program

--- Greg Braxton