Pop Culture

Barbara Walters: I'm retiring 'from appearing on television at all'

Lou Rocco / Today
Barbara Walters.

As expected, veteran television journalist Barbara Walters announced her retirement on "The View" Monday morning -- or rather, her impending retirement. Walters plans to say "so long" to TV in 2014.

"I'm always accused of making people cry," the 83-year-old said as she wiped away tears. "So, let me just say … that I have been on television continuously for over 50 years, but in the summer of 2014 -- a year from now -- I plan to retire from appearing on television at all.

"It has been an absolutely joyful, rewarding, challenging, fascinating, occasionally bumpy ride and I wouldn't change a thing."

After explaining that her health is fine and that the decision was all her own, Walters went on reveal that she'll continue to be a co-executive producer on "The View" even after her on-screen days are over -- whenever that really is. Despite her original declaration that she was retiring from any TV "at all" after next summer, that won't really be the case.

"There will be special occasions, and I will come back," she admitted. "I'm not walking into the sunset. But I don't want to appear on another program; I don’t want to climb another mountain. I want, instead, to sit on a sunny field and admire the very gifted women -- OK, some men too -- who will be taking my place."

Walters, who started her career as a TODAY writer in 1961 and later moved on to the role of on-air co-host, said that she was now passing the torch to another generation of women.

"I smile when some young woman says, 'I grew up watching you on TV,'" she shared. "It's their time now."