Robin Roberts announces illness on 'GMA'; Star Jones admits to surgery

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GBB Maven Monica Haynes is off today, but in her absence, we'll do our best to bring you stars, views and other celebrity news you can use.

A somewhat tearful, but very hopeful Robin Roberts told ABC "Good Morning America" viewers yesterday morning she has breast cancer.

Associated Press
Robin Roberts plans to be smiling again following surgery this week for breast cancer.
Click photo for larger image.

"I am so blessed that I found this in the early stages and the prognosis is so promising that my doctor expects me to be flying planes and hanging on to submarines in the middle of the Atlantic and scaling the Mayan pyramids in no time," she said, holding back tears as she lightly clasped co-anchor Diane Sawyer's hand.

Roberts discovered the lump during a self-examination on the same day she'd done a report on former "GMA" movie critic Joel Siegel, who died of colon cancer last month.

She's slated to undergo surgery Friday.

Speaking of surgery, Star Jones Reynolds FINALLY is speaking about "it." She's admitting in a first-person essay in the September issue of Glamour magazine (on stands Aug. 7) that she ... underwent gastric bypass surgery to lose weight in August 2003.

Sound the trumpets of triumph!

This news wouldn't even surprise Gomer Pyle, but at least we can all sleep soundly now that we know the truth.

The 45-year-old Reynolds writes that she dodged questions about how she dropped 160 pounds in three years because she was "terrified someone would have a tragic result after emulating me."

However, she goes on to say, "the complete truth is, I was scared of what people might think of me. I was afraid to be vulnerable, and ashamed at not being able to get myself under control without this procedure."

When she turned 40 and was feeling lonely, she looked to food for comfort and gained 75 pounds in 17 months. She weighed 307 at her heaviest.

A friend suggested she undergo the surgery. Her husband, banker Al Reynolds, recommended she see a psychologist in the summer of 2005. Through therapy, she says she's learned she can't control what others think.

A new rumor from "The View" has one of Star's former girls' night poker buddies, the Emmy-, Grammy-, Oscar- and Tony-winning actress and comedian Whoopi Goldberg, and stand-up comedian and actress Sherri Shepherd -- of "Less Than Perfect," "Everybody Loves Raymond" and, on the big screen, "Who's Your Caddy?" fame -- in contract negotiations with ABC, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The two this week are expected to be named the next co-hosts on "The View," joining Barbara Walters, Joy Behar and Elisabeth Hasselbeck, who soon will be on maternity leave.

Speculation continues about why multiplatinum R&B singer and musical theater star Usher Saturday called off his wedding to Tameka Foster a mere two hours before the festivities were to commence.

"No one knows why we canceled the wedding, but I can tell you that all of the reasons that everyone is speculating and writing about are completely untrue," Foster told People magazine Monday, in a less than illuminating statement.

The couple, expecting their first child in the fall, were to be married at the Hamptons estate of record producer L.A. Reid, reported.

Foster checked into a local hospital after the canceled ceremony and was rumored to have gone into pre-term labor.

"We had a scare," she volunteered. "But, I am fine and the baby is fine."

Usher's mother and former manager Jonetta Patton wasn't invited to the wedding until the last minute, and she declined the 11th-hour invitation. Usher had previously fired his mom and hired Foster as his manager, and his mother didn't approve of their relationship.

The New York Daily News quoted a source Monday that said Patton's absence was a major factor in Usher's decision to forgo the nuptials and that Foster's criminal past -- exposed by the National Enquirer -- was also rumored to have influenced his decision to call off the wedding, www.eurwebcom reported.

The New York Daily News article claimed Foster served jail time for various petty crimes, including welfare fraud, and dated a drug dealer who was killed in a drive-by. Foster's half-sister, Valencia Foster, was quoted in the article as saying: "Poor Usher has no idea who he's marrying."

Well, maybe his mother did.

Illness, described as "a viral upper respiratory tract infection with a high fever and abnormal coughing," has forced Wexford's own Christina Aguilera to cancel her two remaining concerts in Australia. She'd canceled two other concerts there earlier in the week.

"I want to personally apologize to all of my fans for having to cancel my last two shows here in Melbourne. Unfortunately, I have fallen ill with a bad flu virus," Aguilera, who is reportedly pregnant, said in a statement to

Rest those pipes, Christina. You may need to sing some lullabies in a bit.


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