Tears and hope both flowed from the set of Good Morning America on Thursday morning as the crew bid well wishes to Robin Roberts, who will undergo a bone marrow transplant next week.
Roberts was joined on set by GMA co-hosts Josh Elliott and Lara Spencer during the emotional goodbye, while Diane Sawyer, George Stephanopolous and many other members of the ABC News team sent their regards from the Republican National Convention in Tampa.
Almost immediately, the hashtag #TeamRobin, which was promoted throughout the morning on GMA, became a worldwide trending topic on Twitter.
"I love you and I'll see you soon," Roberts said on Good Morning America.
Roberts will return to her home in Mississippi to be with her ailing mother, Lucimarian, before beginning final preparations for a bone marrow transplant next week.
"Life provides losses and heartbreak for all of us - but the greatest tragedy is to have the experience and miss the meaning," she said Thursday morning. "I've discovered that I have been given many gifts that will carry me through this tough time."
The treatment is part of her ongoing battle against Myelodisplastic syndrome, which is commonly known as preleukemia. Roberts announced in June that she had been diagnosed with MDS. Robin's oldest sister, Sally Ann, turned out to be a perfect bone marrow match.
"I pray for Robin to have supernatural strength, supernatural wisdom and
supernatural favor," Sally Ann said on GMA. "I want to be here to celebrate Robin's 90th birthday, because that'll make me 98."
The longtime TV personality had earlier survived a battle with breast cancer.
"We are damaging your cells beyond recognition, but we are getting rid of them," Dr. Gail Roboz, Roberts' oncologist, said. "We are replacing your cells with Sally's cells."