Wednesday's broadcast was Colbert's first night back on television after the June 12 death of his mother. She was 92.
"She was fun," Colbert said on the show. "She knew more than her share of tragedy, losing her brother and her husband and three of her sons, but her love for her family and her faith in God somehow gave her the strength not only to go on, but to love life without bitterness, and to instill in all of us a gratitude for every day we have together."
Colbert said if viewers like "The Colbert Report" it is because of the efforts of everyone who works on it, but if people like him it is because of how well his mother raised him.