Joan Lunden returned to her old stomping grounds at Good Morning America on Tuesday, June 24, to share some personal news: She has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
The award-winning television journalist, 63, sat down with GMA's Robin Roberts, who battled breast cancer herself in 2007, and told Roberts that she plans to undergo surgery and is prepared for chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
"I heard those words that every woman fears and never wants to hear, 'You have breast cancer,'" she told Roberts. "In the beginning, it's such a shock. It's a stunner… For me, I'm a health advocate, I'm all over America talking to women, saying, 'Make sure that you get all of your checkups all the time.' You almost feel like, 'What did I do wrong?'"
Lunden, who said she has gone "into warrior mode" to fight the disease, continued, "Because we found it early, I was able to tell [my children] that mommy's going to be okay… I have the more aggressive kind, and so it's going to be the chemotherapy and the surgery and the radiation. So I've got that journey ahead."
In addition to her famed reporting career, Lunden is also the mother to seven children, between the ages of 33 and 9.
"I've already started it, I'm already doing my chemo," added Lunden, who remained in good spirits throughout the course of the interview.
At the time of Roberts' struggle with the disease, the GMA host, now 53, wrote, "I never thought I'd be writing this… I have breast cancer… I am so blessed that I found this in the early stages and the prognosis is so promising that my doctor expects me to be flying planes and hanging on to submarines in the middle of the Atlantic and scaling the Mayan Pyramids in no time in the mornings to come. Now I join the ranks of millions of Americans who are fighting this same battle each and every day. I appreciate YOUR courage and YOUR example. Thank you for showing me the way." She was later diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome in 2012 and received a bone marrow transplant to fight the cancer.
Following her appearance on Good Morning America, Lunden tweeted her appreciation to the ABC team, writing, "Thank you to @robinRoberts and my @gma family for all your support this morning."
Lunden started the day on Good Morning America for 17 years, before exiting the show in 1997. In the years since, she has continued to make appearances on programs such as The View, The Wendy Williams Show, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.