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After Barbara Walters Signs off May 16, What Next?

After a yearlong farewell, Barbara Walters says good-bye May 16

And so The Year of Barbara has a firm end-date: May 16.

That's the day news icon Barbara Walters will cohost her last episode of The View and retire from full-time journalism.

It won't be a quiet send-off: The View will have a week-long celebration, ABC News is planning a two-hour prime-time retrospective, and you can expect Barbara's face to be plastered across every network franchise from World News Tonight to Dancing with the Stars.

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And even after May 16, don't count on the 84-year-old Walters to simply sign off forever: She's staying on as an ABC News contributor. Still, as Walters tells AARP Media Editorial Director Myrna Blyth in the current issue of AARP The Magazine, she's happy that she'll be free to "maybe go to a movie or a museum, maybe sleep until 9, maybe see a friend. I look forward to not having every day planned, or having to be at a certain place at a certain time."

produces celebrities by the boxcar, but true icons like Walters are rare. Walters, who started working on TV barely four years after Milton Berle, has been in America's living rooms longer than most Americans have been alive.

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If you doubt for one minute that Barbara Walters is as much part of your life as sliced bread, check out this slideshow tracing her unparalleled career.


Photo: Lou Rocco/ABC/Getty Images


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