'Good Morning America' Cast Bids Farewell to Josh Elliott

"We're very happy you're going to be pursuing your passion," says George Stephanopoulos

Photo: Michael Stewart/Wireimage

Man in the news Josh Elliott was not a physical presence on Monday’s Good Morning America, but his spirit was there.

After teasing the East Coast storm, L.A. quake and an Arizona student riot, GMA co-anchor George Stephanopoulos announced at the top of the show from behind his desk, “First, a little news of our own.”

He congratulated Amy Robach on her promotion. “That’s going to be your chair,” he said, “the new news anchor right here on GMA.”

He added, “It feels so natural, and that Robach “has been such a big part of our family,” filling in during the illness of the show’s co-anchor Robin Roberts.

Noting that the entire cast was celebrating with Robach, Stephanopoulos then went on to say, “And, of course, that also means we have some big news about our friend Josh Elliott. He is going to back to his roots, reporting on the NFL and the Olympics on NBC Sports.”

Going on, the anchor said, “He let us know last night, and, Josh, it has been a great run with you here on GMA. We’re very happy you’re going to be pursuing your passion.”

The show’s lifestyle anchor, Lara Spenser, sitting next to Stephanopoulos, was effusive and expressed her love for Elliott. “He’s our buddy,” she said, “and we’ll miss him very much.”

Elliott, 42, follows former GMA weather forecaster Sam Champion in his departure from the top-rated ABC morning program.

On his new morning show on The Weather Channel, Champion said about Elliott, “He’s a great guy and a very good friend, and what folks need to understand is just like The Weather Channel was an incredible opportunity for my heart, NBC Sports is a great opportunity for Josh’s heart. It puts him right in the middle of the sports world and that is what he loves. … I know that fans of GMA are not loving it, but it’s a happy day for Josh.”

Roberts was not in the New York studio Monday morning. She’s in Los Angeles, prepping to guest judge on Monday night’s Dancing with the Stars.

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