Sherri Shepherd and Jenny McCarthy addressed their departures from "The View" in the first live episode of the show since Shepherd announced her exit. Shepherd said with teary eyes in the Monday, July 7 episode, "A lot of producers have known since the spring that I didn't intend to return after my contract ends in August."
"I didn't want to discuss anything in my personal life because I didn't want to do anything to distract from Barbara Walters and her (retirement) celebration in May," she explained. "You know I'm a woman of faith, and seven is the number of God's completion. I've been here seven years, and my time with 'The View' is complete."
"I'm going to forever be grateful to Barbara Walters and (producer) Bill Geddie for taking a chance on an actress and making me learn things, helping me step out of my comfort zone. They gave me a chance," she went on, thanking former co-hosts Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Joy Behar whom she dubbed her "sister for life."
She also said of Whoopi Goldberg, who appeared to be holding back tears, "You my friend have been a mentor to me. I love you so much, Whoopi Goldberg, because Whoopi Goldberg has had my back. Even when I didn't appreciate it, she's always had my back."
Shepherd recalled her favorite moments on the show, saying, "I've been blessed to interview President Barack Obama. Bill Clinton is a big fan of mine. He loved that I played a hooker in One for the Money. I get the chance to call Oprah Winfrey a friend."
"I do say to everybody, take a chance, step out, do something that makes you scared, because this scared me to do 'The View'. I love the cast and crew who took me in and made me feel like, this is my family. I love you," she continued, adding, "I have exciting news I will be announcing in the future because I love the show I plan on coming back to promote them here."
McCarthy initially joked about her planned exit, saying, "All those rumors about how Sherri and I are leaving are not true! We are staying!" The former Playboy model then admitted, "Actually, it is true. But I love the support. Let me tell you what's going on."
"So grateful to have worked with Barbara Walters in her last year, as well as many producers and co-hosts, and after much consideration, I've taken a new job that will allow me to do what I do best. Which is talk without having to interrupt anyone. I will be announcing it in the next few weeks and I couldn't be more grateful for the fans like you guys who supported us so stay tuned...even if it does compete with 'The View'."
Goldberg is the only host who will return next season. Sarah Palin recently showed her interest in giving "a punch of reality and a voice of reason from America's heartland" to "The View", while former co-host Rosie O'Donnell is reportedly in "active negotiations" to return to the show.