“We’re off all next week and so we will miss on Wednesday night a young man named David Letterman signing off from his program,” Stewart began. “He was for me, and I think for many comics of my generation, an incredible epiphany of how a talk show or entertainment, or how television – for god sake! The man put a camera on a monkey! It seems so simple now, but back then, it was mind blowing…There are so few people who can innovate that format, and then to have the kind of longevity – the list is: Dave.
“On a personal note I had a show very similar to his that did not have either the innovation part, or certainly the longevity part and David Letterman was kind enough to come to our final broadcast and be the final guest, and single-handedly turned what was a funeral atmosphere into a celebration, just by his presence…He said to me, I’ll never forget, ‘Do not confuse cancellation with failure.’ And I thank him for all the amazing years of television, and for that wonderful piece of advice.”
Check out the clip above.