After an illustrious career spanning 53 years, top U.S. TV journalist, Barbara Walters, bids farewell to viewers on the show she created in 1997 – The View.
Born September 25, 1929, in Boston, Massachusetts. The octogenarian first became known as a television personality soon after she was hired as a researcher and writer on NBC’s Today show in 1961. She later co-host the show for over ten years.
She moved to ABC in 1976 where she worked as a correspondent on the network’s news magazine show 20/20. She also hosted a number of specials including a yearly show about her 10 most fascinating people.
She was the first female to co-anchor a network evening news program and is often said to have paved the way for many women in television today.
Walters’ work has won her many accolades including but not limited to: Emmy awards, NAACP Image Award, and Women In Film Crystal + Lucy Awards. She was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame, received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the New York Women’s Agenda.
Walters has interviewed world leaders such as Cuba’s Fidel Castro, Britain’s Margaret Thatcher, Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, India’s Indira Ghandi, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, Syria’s Bashar Al-Assad, Libya’s Muammar al-Gaddafi, Jordan’s King Hussein, and others.
In addition, locally, she has interviewed every U.S. president since Richard Nixon and numerous people from a range of different industries, including entertainment, business, health, and technology.
Walters is reported to have said, “ If I did anything to help that happen that is my legacy.” “Who knows what the future brings? Maybe instead of goodbye, I should say a bientot, which in French means see you later.”
She had revealed her plans for retirement as early as May last year. Her announcement then followed some health issues, including a concussion after fainting, and hitting her head, chickenpox, and open heart surgery in 2010.
Media mogul, Oprah Winfrey reportedly said this on the show – The View, produced to praise Walters achievements, “ Like everyone else I want to thank you for being a pioneer, in everything that word means.”
She continued, “It means being the first… to knock down the door, to break down the barrier, to pave the road that we all walk on.”
Walk good Miss Babs!