CHICAGO – There were no free cars or vacations. No favorite things or makeovers. No celebrity guests on stage – though there were plenty in the audience.

The finale of Oprah Winfrey’s talk show, taped Tuesday and aired Wednesday, was all about the one thing that made her a billion-dollar success: the unique connection she made with millions of viewers for 25 years. In what she called her “love letter” to fans, she made clear that to her, all those TV friendships went both ways.

“Something in me connected with each of you in a way that allowed me to see myself in you and you in me,” Winfrey said. “I listened and grew, and I know you grew along with me.”

Winfrey was the only person on stage with little background music and short flashback clips. The show went to commercials with “Twenty-Five Years,” a soft song that musician Paul Simon wrote and recorded for her.

She called fans her “safe harbor” and became teary eyed when reflecting on her upbringing in rural Mississippi.

“It is no coincidence that a lonely little girl,” Winfrey said, choking up, “who felt not a lot of love, even though my parents and grandparents did the best they could, it is no coincidence that I grew up to feel a genuine kindness, affection, trust and validation from millions of you all over the world.”

Winfrey told viewers that sometimes she was a teacher, but more often her viewers instructed her. She called Wednesday’s episode her “last class from this stage.”

At one point she thanked viewers for sharing her “yellow brick road of blessings” – something she said back in November 2009, when she announced that she would end her show. The program gave rise to a media empire, including a magazine and Winfrey’s own cable network, which she launched in January.

Wednesday’s show was the last piece of a months-long sendoff, but as the hour wrapped up, Winfrey stopped short of saying farewell.

“I won’t say goodbye. I’ll just say, until we meet again,” she said.

Kim Kardasian also nets a man with game

NEW YORK – Another hoops star will join the Kardashian clan.

People magazine reported Wednesday that reality star Kim Kardashian is engaged to her boyfriend of six months, New Jersey Nets forward Kris Humphries. Sister Khloe Kardashian and Los Angeles Laker Lamar Odom were married in 2009.

Kim Kardashian told People that she was in “shock” when she entered her Beverly Hills, Calif., home last week to discover Humphries on bended knee with “will you marry me” spelled out in rose petals.

Humphries, 26, gave Kardashian, 30, a 20.5-carat Lorraine Schwartz diamond ring.

The family stars in the E! reality show “Keeping Up With the Kardashians” and spinoffs, including “Khloe and Lamar.”

Jackie tapes to air on ABC 

NEW YORK – ABC News is presenting never-before-heard recollections from Jacqueline Kennedy.

The network announced Wednesday that for the first time viewers will hear the former First Lady in conversations with historian Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. The recordings were made in the spring of 1964 and sealed until now.

A series of special reports will draw on these seven interviews totaling more than eight hours of audio recordings, in which Jackie Kennedy shared her impressions of life with her husband, President John F. Kennedy. The tapes were left to daughter Caroline Kennedy. Their release is timed to the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy Administration.

The network says the centerpiece will be a special prime-time hour, with additional programs airing across all ABC News broadcasts and platforms this September. Diane Sawyer will anchor.