VIDEO Here’s Kelly Ripa’s much ballyhooed return to Live!


Errbody stop freaking out… Kelly Ripa is back!

Kelly made her first appearance on Live! with Kelly and Michael this morning since the surprise news that co-host Michael Strahan would be leaving for Good Morning America.

Ripa walked out to a standing ovation while holding hands with Strahan before addressing viewers by herself:

“Guys, guys guys, guys – our long national nightmare is over. Look, I am fairly certain that there are trained professional snipers with tranquilizer darts in case I drift too far off message… I want to honestly and sincerely thank you for welcoming me back to the show, the show of support to this bizarre time has been over welcome. I needed a couple of days to gather my thoughts. After 26 years with this company I earned the right. … In that timed I gained some perspective. I always speak from the heart so I didn’t want to come out here and say something I regret.”

Here’s the full clip of Kelly’s big return in which she emphasized how all the craziness helped to open up a new dialogue about communication, consideration and respect in the work place:

The story of Michael’s departure caught fire when it was revealed that Ripa was blindsided by the news and deeply hurt that she was not told earlier about the move. Ripa took a few days off and the stories of all the hard feelings and dissention only grew.

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