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Why Rosie O'Donnell Skipped The Barbara Walters Tribute

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Rosie O’Donnell was not present for “The View” co-hosts’ tribute to the late Barbara Walters on Tuesday due to scheduling conflicts.

“She was flying back and couldn’t make it,” the “Rosie O’Donnell Show” alum’s rep told Page Six on Tuesday.

“She posted wonderful memories of her relationship with Barbara.”

Immediately following Walters’ death on Dec. 30 at age 93, O’Donnell took to his Instagram to pay tribute to the iconic journalist.

“What a long and legendary life she had,” said the “League of Their Own” star.

Rosie O'Donnell and Barbara Walters posing for a photo together.
Rosie O’Donnell couldn’t pay tribute to Barbara Walters on “The View” because she was busy traveling, her rep claims.
Rosie/Instagram

“I was lucky enough to be in her orbit for many years and we saw many Broadway shows together… May she rest in peace and may everyone remember the barriers she broke for women. She really did. She was the first and will always be remembered.”

A spokesperson for “The View” pointed out to TV Line on Tuesday that they have extended an invitation for O’Donnell to participate in an on-air tribute in addition to his social media post.

A photo of Barbara Walters in
Walters died on December 30. His cause of death has yet to be revealed.
Disney General Entertainment Con

On Tuesday’s episode, past and present co-hosts of “The View,” including Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar and Sunny Hostin, paid tribute to the legendary journalist.

“It was surreal,” said Lisa Ling, who was a panelist on “The View” alongside Walters from 1999 to 2022, of her time on the show. “I’ve watched Barbara all my life and here she was sitting next to me on my left and it was an amazing feeling.”

Sherri Shepherd, who co-hosted “The View” from 2007 to 2014, added that she felt Walters defended her “fiercely” during the show.

In a separate segment, “View” veterans Star Jones and Debbie Matenopoulos also reminisced about working with Walters.

Meredith Vieira, who co-hosted “The View” from 1997 to 2006 and was the show’s first moderator, called the phone because she wasn’t feeling well.

“She’s sick, that’s why she can’t be here, but she’s a cop. She’s on the phone,” Behar pointed.

Sara Haines added to Vieira: “I know you didn’t want to stop honoring Bárbara.”

The longtime journalist then credited Walters with being the reason the talk show took off, noting, “We had bad ratings in the beginning, but there was so much respect for Barbara among the people at ABC that they just kept going and look now.”

Elisabeth Hasselbeck was also unable to be present at the studio, but she called via videoconference and spoke about how she considered Walters her “TV mother” and “mentor”.

Viewers took to social media during the show’s run to complain about O’Donnell’s absence.

“I know the show has bad blood with Rosie O’Donnell, but it would have been nice if they included her today. #theview”, a person tweeted.

Other I wrote, “I would like @Rosie to be included in @TheView’s Barbara Walters memoir show. #TheView#RosieODonnell.”

A screenshot of Barbara Walters' Instagram tribute to Barbara Walters.
“I was lucky enough to be in its orbit,” O’Donnell said moments after the news broke of Walters’ death.
Rosie/Instagram

Some have speculated that the couple’s difficult relationship in the past may have played a role in O’Donnell’s decision.

However, the rep for the “Smilf” alum adds to Page Six, “They DID NOT have a rocky relationship. It was repaired many years ago.

In 2019, it was reported that Walters once threatened to quit “The View” due to his grievances with the comedian.

However, O’Donnell confessed to his part in the alleged feud in the telltale book, “Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of The View”, and admitted that he “said some things I shouldn’t have” to Walters. .

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