Ed McMahon Celebrity Watchlist

Fast Facts

  • Was an instructor and test pilot during World War II, and flew 85 combat missions in Korea.
  • Worked state fairs and carnivals as a barker, and sold vegetable shredders on the Atlantic City boardwalk.
  • Made his network TV debut in 1950 as a clown on CBS's The Big Top.
  • Appeared on Broadway in The Impossible Years in the '60s.
  • While the host of Star Search (1983-95), the contestants included Drew Carey, Ray Romano, Dennis Miller, Britney Spears and Rosie O'Donnell.
  • Wrote a memoir to honor Johnny Carson called Here's Johnny!: My Memories of Johnny Carson, The Tonight Show, and 46 Years of Friendship in 2005.
  • In 2006, landed in first place on a list of the greatest sidekicks named by Entertainment Weekly.
  • Started appearing on the annual Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Association Labor Day Telethon in 1967; made his 41st and final appearance in 2008.
  • Was featured in a Cash4Gold Super Bowl ad alongside MC Hammer in 2009; the ad was filmed at his home.
  • Penned a number of books on multiple subjects including bartending and weight loss.


  • Katherine Mary McMahon — Daughter
  • Claudia McMahon — Daughter
  • Victoria Valentine McMahon — Ex-wife
  • Jeffrey McMahon — Son
  • Michael Edward McMahon — Son
  • Pamela Hurn — Wife
  • Linda McMahon — Daughter
  • Eleanor McMahon — Mother
  • Alyce Ferrill McMahon — Ex-wife
  • Edward McMahon — Father


  • Catholic University, Washington, DC (BA in Speech and Drama, 1949); attended Boston College, Boston, MA

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  • Birth Name: Edward Leo Peter McMahon Jr.
  • Birth Place: Detroit, MI
  • Died: June 23, 2009
  • Profession: TV host

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