After a decades-long run on late night television, David Letterman announced on Thursday that he will retire in 2015.

“The gap-toothed comic, a favorite of Johnny Carson, will hang up his Top Ten list and Stupid Pet Tricks in 2015, he shared with the audience at the taping of tonight’s ‘Late Show,’” the New York Daily News reported.

Letterman first announced his decision to CBS chief Les Moonves

“He and I have had a relationship for years and years and years, and we have had this conversation in the past, and we agreed that we would work together on this circumstance and the timing of this circumstance. And I phoned him just before the program, and I said ‘Leslie, it’s been great, you’ve been great, and the network has been great, but I’m retiring,’” said Letterman.

David Letterman (Image source: Getty Images)

David Letterman (Image source: Getty Images)

“I just want to reiterate my thanks for the support from the network, all of the people who have worked here, all of the people in the theater, all the people on the staff, everybody at home, thank you very much. What this means now, is that Paul and I can be married,” he added.

The late night legend added: “We don’t have the timetable for this precisely down – I think it will be at least a year or so, but sometime in the not too distant future, 2015 for the love of God, in fact, Paul and I will be wrapping things up.”

His surprise announcement was met in his studio with a standing ovation.

News of Letterman’s retirement was first announced on Twitter by REM bassist Mike Mills.

The announcement obviously marks an end of an era.

“Letterman is the longest-serving late-night host in TV history, last year surpassing his friend and mentor Johnny Carson at the 31-year mark. His verion of NBC’s “Late Show” debuted in 1982,” the New York Daily News reported.

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