Barbara Walters announces retirement date

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Image Credit: Lou Rocco/ABC

It’s the end of an era.

ABC announced Monday that Barbara Walters’s final day co-hosting The View will be Friday, May 16. That same night, ABC will air a two-hour special at 9:00 p.m. ET highlighting her life and career. Walters announced last May that the 2013-2014 season would be her last on the daytime talk show she created in 1997.

“In this business there are legends, there are icons, and then there is Barbara Walters,” said Robert A. Iger, Chairman and Chief Executive of The Walt Disney Company in a statement. “She’s a dear friend and colleague as well as someone I deeply admire, and it’s impossible to fully convey her impact and influence on television. She broke barriers, defied convention, made history and set the standard for journalistic excellence for more than 50 years.  It’s hard to imagine television without her.”

All season, The View has been celebrating Walters’ career by highlighting her most famous interviews with an ongoing series, “The Year of Barbara.” After her retirement in May, Walters will remain an executive producer of the show.

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