Barbara Walters officially signed off from The View on Friday, May 16, after more than six decades of fearless reporting — and working with several co-hosts! The veteran journalist touched on her start at ABC News, was greeted by surprise guests (Oprah Winfrey and Hillary Clinton!), and admits to Us Weekly that there's still someone out there she would love to sit down with.
"I would love to do an interview with the Pope," the 84-year-old told Us after the show. "I do my homework, so I have a certain sense of authority," she added of how she's conducted one-on-ones over the years. "Sometimes I know more about the person than they do themselves. I'm very rarely nervous. When I finish an interview, I do 'shoulda, coulda, woulda,' and it drives me crazy, but when I'm actually doing the interview, I'm fine in authority and that's a good feeling."
Walters received a memorable goodbye during her last taping, as surprise guests Winfrey and Secretary of State Clinton took the stage. (All 11 former and current View co-hosts reunited on Thursday's episode to say their goodbyes, including Rosie O'Donnell, Elisabeth Hasselback, Joy Behar, and Meredith Vieira.)
"I didn't expect what was happening today and when I looked up and there were all of these women, most of whom I recognized who are in this business," Walters told Us of the special guests. "They all took time out of their day and all had to line up backstage. I can't imagine a better tribute than that."
During her final show, Walters reminisced about first joining ABC News in 1962. "I was drowning without a life preserver," she recalled of co-hosting with Hugh Downs at the time. "But then I started my specials and I learned to swim again."
All she can think about now is another "s" word — sleep. "Monday comes, and I'm going to sleep late!" she told Us of her first day of retirement. "A little later on I'm going to go to Europe for a few days with a friend because I don't want to sit home and think about, 'What do I do today? Why aren't I on the air?'" she joked. "So I'm going to go away for a bit. And then it's the summer!"
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