Looking healthier than ever, a glowing and exuberant Barbara Walters made her first nationally televised appearance on The View since her open heart surgery in May, telling fans and friends “I’m so happy to be alive! I’m so happy to talk to all of you!”
On May 10 during The View, the legendary journalist announced that she was going to have surgery to replace a heart valve, and two months later to the day Walters took to the small screen to tell her fans a very important announcement.
“It’s two months today since I had my surgery and I am fully recovered!” she exclaimed via Skype on the ABC morning talk show as the audience gave her a rousing standing ovation. Walters later explained in detail why she needed to have the surgery.
“I had to do it…There are four valves and one of the valves in my heart was getting very narrow so the blood could not be pumped out and it would be very dangerous. You can go for awhile, but then you go like that [snaps her fingers]… die.”
But through it all, the 50-year broadcast news veteran never lost her sense of humor.
“My scar is from here to the top of my breast bone to here, barely visible, he (the doctor) saws through like with a crowbar and then he literally reaches your heart, puts it in his hand and attaches a new valve. In my case, an animal valve…from a pig or a cow. I was glad it was a cow because I didn’t think a pig was kosher,” she joked.
Walters said she spent about 10 days in the hospital and recovery can take anywhere from one to three months.
And she couldn’t have made a full recovery without all the well wishes from famous friends.
“The fans, the friends, it was like I was reading my own obituary,” she said of the messages she received from the likes of Woody Allen, King Rainier of Jordan, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. “It helped me get better. It helped so much. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
Walters will be returning to The View the first week in September.