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Barbara Walters: "A year from now I plan to retire from television"

After much speculation, Barbara Walters officially announced Monday that she's retiring.

But don't say goodbye to the veteran TV journalist just yet. She'll be on the small screen through next summer.

She opened "The View" on Monday with: "After all the speculation...and rumors...I promised you if I had anything to announce about my future plans, you would here it first here."

"The View" then cut to a taped video segment, narrated by Walters, that chronicled her long career -- from her time on NBC's "Today" show to her stint as an anchor for ABC News. The clip focused on career highlights, including Walters' time abroad, memorable interviews and her work on "20/20" and "The View."

She pointed to her March 1999 interview with Monica Lewinsky. "It remains the most-watched interview in television history," Walters said.

Wiping away tears, Walters then said, almost with disbelief, "I have been on television continuously for over 50 years. Ah." She added, "A year from now I plan to retire from television." But Walters noted, "I'm perfectly healthy. This is my decision. This is what I want to do."

Earlier this year, Walters battled a couple of health issues, including a bout with chickenpox.

Walters, 83, said even after her official retirement, she plans to stay on as a producer of the show and will certainly pop up on TV -- on occasion. "I'm not walking into the sunset," Walters insisted.

"I had an amazing career -- beyond anything that I can ever imagine," Walters said, adding that she hopes she can inspire young, budding women journalists.

And in case you were worried about never seeing Walters again, there's an entire year to go with "exciting thing planned."

Walter wrapped things up with a nod to the viewers "who have been watching me for so many years...thank you."

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stopped by "The View" Monday for the announcement, as well as executives from Disney and ABC.

Tell us: Will you be sad to see Walters go?

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