Ed McMahon, former sidekick to Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show, has died at the age of 86 in Los Angeles.
McMahon died Tuesday morning in the UCLA Ronald Reagan Medical center following being hospitalized for pneumonia and other ailments earlier this year.
Detroit-native, McMahon began his career in Maine at the age of 15 as a bingo caller, putting himself through college by slicing vegetables on the Atlantic City boardwalk. By World War II he joined in the US marines as a pilot where he was an instructor and test pilot, discharged in 1946 following a stint in Korea.
His first broadcasting job was for WLLH-AM in Lowell, Mass, leading him later to a television career with WCAU-TV in Philadelphia. By 1962 McMahon took a sidekick role alongside comedian Johnny Carson on the Tonight Show. It was McMahon who yelled the famous “Heeeeere’s Johnny!” Carson and McMahon retired from the show together.
He later went to host “Star Search” and “TV’s Bloopers and Practical Jokes” in addition to taking roles in such films as Fun with Dick and Jane (1977), Butterfly (1982), and Bewitched (2005).
McMahon is survived by his wife Pamela, whom he married in 1992, and three sons and three daughters.