Credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for ATI

Regis Philbin is getting ready to walk off into the sunset.

The TV veteran, 79, is leaving Live! With Regis and Kelly this year, he announced on Tuesday's show. "This will be my last year on the show," the star said. "It's been a long time. It's been 28 years. It's been an enormous thrill."

Explaining that it wasn't an easy decision to make, he added philosophically: "Everything must come to an end...especially with certain old people."

His exact final date -- or who might replace him alongside Kelly Ripa -- are yet to be determined. "This is gonna happen sometime the end of the summer or fall -- we'll have a lot of fun between now and then!"

Choking up, his cohost Ripa said, "I can only speak for America and all of us here: It has been a pleasure and a privilege and a dream come true and I wish I could do something to change your mind!"