AceShowbiz - Rosie O'Donnell is clearing the air. After raising some eyebrows for being absent at "The View" emotional tribute to Barbara Walters on Tuesday, January 3, the TV personality shared on Instagram that she had a personal reason for her absence.
"They invited me but I wasn't able to make it," Rosie said in a video posted on Tuesday evening. She went on to say, "And I didn't want to be in a big group of people."
The comedian went on to say, "I don't know, I was worried I would get upset and I didn't want to do that. So, there you go."
Meanwhile, her rep shared that the 60-year-old, who was also a co-host on the talk show at one point, apparently couldn't be there to honor the legendary journalist because of scheduling conflicts. "She was flying back and unable to attend," Rosie's rep told Page Six. "She has posted wonderful memories of her relationship with Barbara."
In the Tuesday episode of "The View", Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar and the hosts of the morning talk show paid tribute to Barbara, who died at the age of 93 on December 30, 2022. "It's her vision, her passion, her show, and today, The View remembers Barbara Walters," the intro concluded before Whoopi and Joy took the stage alongside co-hosts Sunny Hostin, Sara Haines and Alyssa Farah Griffin.
"People have been talking about her on all of the shows, but we knew her better than anyone, I think," Joy said of Barbara. "She very much defied sexism and defied ageism. She went right into the jaws of the lion... She started 'The View' when she was 68 years old -- very few people start a brand new career at 68."
Whoopi added, "The industry had to respect her. She did not allow them not to respect her. There was nobody like her."
The tribute also featured former "The View" co-hosts such as Meredith Vieira, Debbie Matenopoulos, Lisa Ling, Sherri Shepherd, Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Star Jones joining in person and via telephone and Zoom.
As for Rosie, she shared a video honoring her late friend shortly after her death went public. "Very sad to hear about Barbara Walters' passing, although 93, man…who wouldn't take that?" Rosie. She then talked about the "long, eventful, and legendary life she had" and said she "was lucky enough to be in her orbit for a good many years."
Concluding her video, Rosie shared hopes that Barbara "rests in peace" and insisted that she would not be forgotten.