She received a heartfelt goodbye from the audience, who chanted her name over and over as she stepped onto the stage — but then O'Donnell threw the subtlest of shade during her goodbye speech, thanking former moderator Barbara Walters profusely and barely mentioning current mod and nemesis Whoopi Goldberg.
"Thank you to the cast and crew, and mostly to Barbara Walters, who has always looked out for me in my life and career and is an amazing woman," she said. "We had lunch yesterday. I want to thank her for making this show and letting me be on it twice. We've had fun. I hope we're gonna have more. I'll come back and do an occasional crafting segment 'cause I have a hot glue gun and I will travel."
Her words were not nearly as subtle at a lunch in New York to raise awareness for heart disease earlier this week, where she said The View needs Walters back in its life badly.
"The View, which I loved, changed," she said. "Not the same. It needs Barbara Walters. It now lacks leadership."
Ouch — another pointed dig at Goldberg, who as moderator would be considered the show's current "leadership."
It is no secret that O'Donnell and Goldberg thoroughly dislike each other. They got into several heated debates — some would say screaming matches — on the air since O'Donnell's return to the show in the fall of 2014, including a huge blowup in December during a Hot Topics segment on racism.
O'Donnell announced she was leaving the show and her wife on the same day last week. She later clarified that her reason for leaving was to reduce what stress she could control in an effort to maintain her health. The TV personality suffered a near-fatal heart attack two years ago.
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