Brad Garrett talks about his ''Star Search'' experience with the famous personality

By Brad Garrett
November 27, 2009 at 05:00 AM EST

March 6, 1923-June 23, 2009

I first had the pleasure of meeting Ed McMahon when I was a contestant on Star Search, which he hosted, in 1984. I was 23 and had grown up idolizing The Tonight Show, so you can imagine what a thrill it was. The genuine kindness he showed to all of the performers, most of whom were making their television debuts, was a testament to his true character. I will never forget Ed’s sincerity and accessibility; the jovial, fun-loving man I had seen on The Tonight Show was exactly that.

McMahon died of undisclosed causes in L.A.