“I'm not going anywhere! I'm staying right here!” joked Robin Roberts Thursday when a reporter asked how ABC's “Good Morning America” would be handling her absence from the show while she undergoes her upcoming bone-marrow transplant.
In a satellite interview that included her “GMA” co-workers, Roberts, who announced in June that she'd been diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, a blood disorder that sometimes leads to leukemia, told reporters at the Television Critics Association's summer meetings that she expects the transplant to occur toward the end of the summer, “most likely the end of August, early September.”
“It's fascinating/slash/scary how you have to prepare for something like this,” remarked Roberts, who looked as lively as she usually does on air but confessed that she does “go through moments of fatigue” and that this was a day when she was feeling the effects of the treatments she's undergoing to prepare for the transplant.
The show's recent string of ratings victories against its once-indomitable NBC rival “Today” “have been pretty good medicine,” said Roberts, whose bone marrow is to be supplied by her sister, Sally Ann Roberts, a news anchor in New Orleans.
While she's gone, Roberts said, ABC News' Diane Sawyer, Barbara Walters and Katie Couric may all spend some time filling in for her.
South Jersey's Kelly Ripa may be in the mix as well.
“The women of 'The View'” have offered to pitch in, too, said “GMA” executive producer Tom Cibrowski.
Let's hope it won't come to that.