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Dr. Phil, Rachael Ray & More Continue Singing Oprah's Praises

Oprah Winfrey, Rachael Ray, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz, Wendy Williams AP Photo/Chris Pizzello; Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images; Marc Bryan-Brown/Getty Images; AP Photo/Litboy; AP Photo/Charles Sykes

Before everyone and his mother had a daytime talk show, there was Oprah Winfrey.

And the news that in less than two years there won't be an Oprah Winfrey Show as we know it has prompted an outpouring of well wishes and appreciations from those whose stars have shined a little brighter thanks to Oprah's warm glow.

"I am going to enjoy every episode between now and 2011," offered Food Network star turned syndicated talk-show host Rachael Ray, who waited until Oprah had discussed the matter "one-on-one" with her audience today to comment.

"Oprah opened the door for me to move into daytime television and I can't thank her enough. I look forward to seeing what she does next…there will only ever be one Oprah!"

Hell, even Dr. Phil McGraw knows who first put him on the map.

"This is a very nostalgic moment for me," said the psychologist turned help-me-help-you guru, who started off as a regular on Oprah.

"Oprah Winfrey is first and foremost one of my dearest friends and obviously the person who taught me everything I know about television. Her show was home for me for five of the most exciting years of my life. The Oprah Winfrey Show is the gold standard and I know that she will succeed at whatever she chooses to do next."

Talk-show host Wendy Williams chimed in, as well, thanking Oprah for her pioneering ways.

"Oprah is a legend and a ground breaker," Williams said. "She paved the way for so many people. I certainly couldn't be where I am today, hosting my own daytime talk show if she hadn't come before me so, I'd just like to thank her for that and wish her all the best in her new endeavors."

Dr. Mehmet Oz, Oprah's former resident medical man and now host of The Dr. Oz Show, is rumored to be next in line for the daytime queen's time slot, thanks to her.

"I know the rest of the world shares my heartfelt admiration and congratulatory salute to a woman who showed us how the power of television can make us better," Oz said today.

"On a personal note, as a mentor and a friend, Ms. Winfrey built a bridge so I could take everything I learned in medicine and transfer it to television in an effort to teach millions. That is symbolic of the higher calling perspective she instills in everyone privileged enough to work with her."

And just think of all the millions of people who watched her five days a week!

"Nobody bother me while I sort out this 'no more Oprah Show' business," tweeted Rob Riggle, whom we know was joking, but still...

A big cultural bomb went off yesterday, and he knows it.

Added funnyman Kevin Nealon: "Don't you quit me, Oprah! You're not gonna like the real world. It's cold out here!"

"Hard to believe that Oprah is pulling the plug on America's favorite daytime show," Nicky Hilton tweeted yesterday, adding a sad-face emoticon.

And now we know who Kim Kardashian's been keeping up with:

"Wait Oprah is stopping the Oprah Winfrey show in 2011! What am I ever going 2 do with my life!!!!!!"

(Originally published Nov. 20, 2009, at 4:18 p.m. PT)


Check out some Oprahtastic times in our Memorable Moments gallery.