Johnny Carson is being remembered for refining the talk show format with a monologue and skits, as well as launching the careers of dozens of entertainers.
The longtime "Tonight Show" host died Sunday at the age of 79. N-B-C says he died of emphysema.
David Letterman says all the late night TV hosts who came after Carson are pretenders. And comedian Billy Crystal calls Carson "the greatest talk show host of our time with the quickest mind."
President Bush says Carson had a profound influence on American life and entertainment.
In a statement, Bush calls Carson a "patriot," who served in the Navy during World War II. He also says the Nebraska native "always remembered his roots in the heartland of America."