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Ex-'Meet the Press' host David Gregory hailed on Sunday's broadcast after his abrupt departure

This Feb. 24, 2013 photo released by NBC News shows moderator David Gregory on the set of

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This Feb. 24, 2013 photo released by NBC News shows moderator David Gregory on the set of "Meet the Press," in Washington. Gregory is tweeting that he is leaving NBC. In tweets posted Thursday, Aug. 14, 2014, Gregory said he is leaving the network as he arrived at it, "humbled and grateful." "Meet the Press" has fallen to third place since he took it over in 2008. His departure had been rumored for months. (AP Photo/NBC, William B. Plowman)

NEW YORK, N.Y. - NBC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell has paid tribute on "Meet the Press" to its abruptly departed host, David Gregory.

Mitchell told viewers Sunday that the long-running public-affairs show has made a lot of history and that a large share was made with Gregory at the helm. She said Gregory had been "true to the traditions of the program and NBC News."

Gregory had been at NBC News for two decades and host of "Meet the Press" since 2008. Last week he announced he was leaving the network amid sinking ratings for the program. Prior to his tenure, it had been the ratings leader.

Mitchell was filling in as host.

NBC political director Chuck Todd takes over as permanent host Sept. 7.

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