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Why I Left The Show


With her upcoming appearance on Live With Regis & Kelly next month, Kathie Lee Gifford is speaking out for the first time on why she really left the show.

“My daddy was dying, and I was not comfortable making it public,” Gifford tells the New York Post. “I had a very personal reason for not going through yet one more painful experience in a public way.”

Her father was suffering from a progressive brain disease similar to Alzheimer’s called Lewy Body Dementia (LBD). He died in 2002. “I knew it was going to be a horrendous family experience. I just had to have that time with him without cameras in my face and without having to explain things,” Kathie Lee reveals. “I wanted my daddy to be able to die with the dignity in which he had lived his life.”

Kathie Lee’s September 14th appearance marks the 20th anniversary of the show and the first time she’s been on since she left in July of 2000.

“I was so closely associated with the show and so closely branded with it that it was extremely wise for them to distance themselves from me in order to give Kelly [Ripa] a chance to make an impact ├óΓé¼ΓÇ¥ which she’s done beautifully,” Gifford said.

They also distanced themselves from you cuz everybody hated you by the time you left, woman. You were the Star Jones of the show!

Update: From reader Christina.

“Just cause I think she’s a self-righteous bitch I thought I’d call her out on her “get out of the spotlight” excuse. Most people don’t release and album the same year they want to get themselves out of the spot light and spend more time away from the cameras with their ailing fathers. Kathy lee released “The Heart of A Woman” the same year she left Regis, and her excuse for leaving the show then was to work on her music career. It had nothing to do with her “daddy”. Thought you’d enjoy the tid-bit.”

[Image via Mavrix Online.]

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Aug 17, 2007 11:08am PDT

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