Ray Richmond contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts revealed this morning at TCA via satellite feed from ABC’s studios in New York that she hopes to take a medical leave from the show sometime between the end of August and early September to undergo a bone marrow transplant. Roberts was diagnosed last month with the bone marrow disease MDS, previously known as preleukemia. She was upbeat about things during the panel, continuing to put a brave face on what has to already prove a frightening ordeal. “It’s fascinating and-slash-scary how you…prepare yourself for something like this. But I have some wonderful, wonderful friends at ABC News, who also happen to be colleagues…and everybody here is going to step up their game”. Roberts mentioned that those who have volunteered to serve as replacements during her convalescence include Barbara Walters, Diane Sawyer and Katie Couric, while GMA exec producer Tom Cibrowski added Kelly Ripa and the women of The View to the list. Cibrowski added, “We have so many people who love Robin so, so much…Everyone is willing to come in and join us for a little bit”.
Asked how she was feeling today, Roberts admitted that this was one of those days “where I’m kind of a little more tired than I usually am. I do go through moments of fatigue. But I gotta tell you, being here and the run that we’ve had has truly energized me. It’s pretty good medicine, I’ve got to say, to be taking.” GMA has rebounded in recent weeks to overtake the Today show in total viewers for the first time since 1995 and tied Today for first place in the 25-54 demographic — also for the first time in 17 years.