I'm convinced that laughter is one of the secrets of longevity. And the proof is merely to look at the ages of America's funny men and women who have kept us laughing for decades.

Some are gone and some are living, but they all have one thing in common, they see things "through their funny eye," as the late comedian David Brenner said of his father's outlook on life.

Laughter really is the best medicine. Try going for a day looking at things through your "funny eye." Then try it for another day and another until smiling and laughter becomes your happy way of life.

Brenner passed in 2014 at the age of 78. And the honor roll of passed comedians who have left us laughing is legend: Bob Hope, 100; George Burns, 100; Milton Berle, 93; Phyllis Diller, 95; Joan Rivers, 81; Sid Caesar, 91; Jonathan WInters, 87; Soupy Sales, 83; Bea Arthur, 86; Mel Blanc, 81; Jack Paar, 86; Johnny Carson, 80; Henny Youngman, 91.

Laughter really is the best medicine. Try going for a day looking at things through your "funny eye." Then try it for another day and another until smiling and laughter becomes your happy way of life.

I have a personal recollection of Henny Youngman. He performed at my wedding in 1979. 

Henny had done his routine at the Advertising Club of Washington, D.C. and left his business card with his phone number. Henny would ask you if you'd like to see a picture of his "pride and joy." Expecting to see photos of his kids, he pulled out this small business card with a color photo of a bottle of Pride furniture polish and a container of Joy liquid detergent.

Henny walked in the front door of our home where the wedding took place and started off by quoting his famous one liner, "Take my wife, please!" He then approached my beautiful, blushing bride, Joy, (who had no knowledge that he was going to be there) and said, "Here's your wedding gift, a lovely diamond pin." And he then proceeded to give her a large safety pin which had a Roosevelt dime soldered to it. A dime-in-pin! Get it?? Then he played his fiddle and told jokes for 20 minutes. What an incredible day it was.

Over the years, comedians have tickled our funny bones and made us laugh out loud. Here are some of my favorite jokes.

" I don't know what's so great about Florida. I sent my parents there when they were 65. Thirty years later...they're dead." -Robert Klein

And these from deadpan comic Steven Wright: "Why do psychics have to ask for your name?" "99 percent of lawyers give the rest a bad name."

"I have two very rare photographs. One is a picture of Houdini locking his keys in his car. The other is a rare photograph of Norman Rockwell beating up a child." " And some wonderful one-liners from Rodney Dangerfield.

"My wife and I were happy for twenty years. Then we met." "My father carries around the picture of the kid who came with his wallet." " A girl phoned me and said, "Come on over. There's nobody home." I went over. Nobody was home!"

And the living list of funny people goes on: Shecky Green, 88; Shelly Berman, 90; Don Rickles, 88; Jerry Lewis, 88; Jerry Stiller, 88; Jack Carter, 92; Bob Newhart, 85; Betty White, 93; Carol Channing, 94, Carol Burnett, 81; Carl Reiner, 92; and Mel Brooks, 89.

Is it a coincidence? Laughter and long life? I don't think so. 

My dad used to have a cardboard sign taped to the front of the cash register in his Army-Navy store which read, "A SMILE DOES IT!" Truer words were never spoken

Maybe it's because I'm of a certain age and can't really relate to some of today's music and today's "comics." That's why I love to go back into the TV vaults and bring back the old masters. They really knew how to get you laughing and to keep you that way.

Why does everything, I mean everything have to be so damn serious? It's all going to work out anyway, so why not enjoy your journey and add a little laughter to your every day.

Laughter really is the best medicine. Try going for a day looking at things through your "funny eye." Then try it for another day and another until smiling and laughter becomes your happy way of life. You'll probably live a lot longer.

And, this "funny business" might catch on. Psychologists say that laughter really is contagious. Oh my gosh, imagine a world where everyone is happy!

Elliot Denniberg ran an advertising agency for 40 years and won four Emmy Awards and a Clio for television commercials. He lives in Maryland and Florida.