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Ann Curry says goodbye to 'Today' with tears

Ann Curry breaks down during her announcement of

Ann Curry breaks down during her announcement of her exit from the Today show. Matt Lauer gave her praise for her years of work. (June 28, 2012) (Credit: NBC)

Ann Curry isn't done with NBC yet, she announced Thursday. 

NBC posted details about Curry's new role at the network on their website, announcing she will be the “Today” show's anchor at large and national and international correspondent for NBC News.

“We're going to go all over the world and all over this country,” she said on the show. “We're going to do great work, I hope." 

“Today” executive producer Jim Bell discussed Curry's new job in a statement posted the show's website. 

“I know of only one journalist who in just a matter of years has traveled to Sudan six times, broken exclusive world news with top world leaders, and broadcast live from both the South Pole and Mount Kilimanjaro,” he told NBC. “Ann has quite literally reached amazing heights in her career, and with this new role, she will continue her intrepid climb bringing viewers her signature brand of humanitarian reporting.”

In a tearful farewell address marked by a broken voice and coolness to Matt Lauer sitting about two inches from her, Ann Curry ended a “Today” run that began almost 20 years ago (in 1994 to be exact) -- though a co-anchor one that began this time last year.

“I will still be a part of the “Today” show family, but I'm going to have a new title and a new role,” she said on the show. 

“This is not as I expected to leave this couch after 15 years, but I'm so grateful. We often call ourselves a family but you are all the 'Today' family,” she said, addressing the camera and audience directly.

“I have loved you and wanted to give you the world.”

Her big line: “I'm sorry I couldn't get the ball over the finish line, but man, I did try.”

That was the big line because it was also the saddest: She sure did try. 

There were hugs all around -- though Matt, sitting by her side, didn't get one. On purpose? You may draw your own conclusions.

He said, “you've got the biggest heart in the business.” Most people, in fact, would agree.

In an extended interview with USA Today yesterday, Curry said that the ongoing dribble of leaks about her departure — all of them to The New York Times -- "have hurt deeply.” 

Here are the key outtakes from Susan Page's exclusive interview:

It's “going to be a bit of a tough day,” she told USA Today in a 40-minute phone interview Wednesday, sounding as though she were fighting back tears. “I'm going to have to tell our viewers. That's what makes me more emotional than anything. I don't want to leave them. I love them. And I will really miss them."

“I don't know who has been behind the leaks, but no question they've hurt deeply,” she says. “I know I am not to blame for the ratings worries,” Curry says. “And my bosses have said to me there are many factors involved. There is no doubt that the rating wars have become meaner and less focused on our responsibilities as journalists,” though she says some at Today do “brilliant work.”

Per the USA report, she'll stay with the network to report international stories, and will produce specials for the various news division broadcasts.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Tags: Ann curry , today , matt lauer , usa today

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