Lucimarian Roberts, left, and Robin Roberts in 2006. (Donna Svennevik / AP )
Robin Roberts abruptly left "Good Morning America"for her medical leave a day early on Thursday and now the reason is clear. She was rushing to be with her ailing 88-year-old mother, Lucimarian, in Mississippi, before she passed away Thursday night.
"Good Morning America's" co-anchor George Stephanopoulos made the announcement on Friday's show, telling viewers that Robin did make it home to see her mother in time.
According to People, a note was passed to "Good Morning America" staffers on Thursday night in which senior executive producer Tom Cibrowski explained, "Robin arrived home with her sister Sally Ann forging through flooded and blocked roads to be with her beloved Mother in time to see her."
The note also pointed out that Lucimarian "was the first African American to head Mississippi's Board of Education. She loved the written word and the poetry and joy of song. She even recorded a CD of hymns for her family as a gift last year."
The death of Roberts' mother comes just before the "Good Morning America" co-anchor is set to have a bone marrow transplant to combat MDS, a rare blood disorder.
It's unclear how long Roberts will take to recover, but ABC has lined up a roster of stars to fill in during her absence, including Oprah Winfrey, Chris Rock, Kelly Ripa, Diane Sawyer, Katie Couric, Barbara Walters and Elizabeth Vargas.
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