Updated April 24, 2017, 8:30 a.m. PT: Richard Simmons' release from Cedars-Sinai Hospital on Sunday April 23 was a paparazzi- and police-heavy affair. Once he had arrived safely at his home, photographers were reportedly standing outside his garage (which was street-facing) to catch a glimpse of the fitness-guru-turned-hermit. As reported by AOL, Simmons posted a thank-you note to police on his Facebook page for keeping him safe from unwanted stares as he attempted to enter his home.
On his Facebook page, Simmons wrote: "I wanted to take a moment to send a big thank you to the wonderful doctors, nurses and staff at Cedars Sinai Medical Center during my short stay there this week. They make you feel good even though you’re in the hospital for feeling bad. Another shout out goes to the wonderful men and women of the Los Angeles Police Dept. They were so helpful and kind as I returned home. Let’s take a minute and all be thankful for medical professionals, police, firefighters and our brave military forces here and around the world. They risk so much every day to make us well and keep us protected."
Simmons still has yet to appear to the public, but for now it's nice to see his heart is in the right place.
Updated April 19, 2017, 9:45 a.m. PT: Richard Simmons has spoken out about his hospitalization on Tuesday in a statement that honestly sounds a little too breezy.
"Hello to everyone who has shown concern for me and sent their good wishes. You will never know how much it means to me," he wrote in the statement, released by his rep Wednesday. "Aren’t you sick of hearing and reading about me?! LOL Well by now you know that I'm not 'missing,' just a little under the weather. I’m sure I will be feeling good and back home in a couple of days."
The statement continued, "This has reminded me that when you need help you can’t be afraid to reach out and ask for it. We all think we should always be able to solve our problems all by ourselves and sometimes it’s just bigger than we are. I reached out and I hope you will too. I’m sure there are people in your life who love and care for you and would do anything to help you with the challenges you face. Just knowing you care has already made me feel better. Hope to see you again soon!"
Conspiracy theories surrounding Simmons' disappearance from the public eye have, admittedly, gotten a little out of control. But this statement? Definitely worrisome.
We wanted Richard Simmons to be found, but not like this!
People magazine is reporting that the former fitness guru, now 68 years old, has been hospitalized for "severe indigestion" that was interfering with his ability to eat.
"Richard Simmons was hospitalized on Monday at an undisclosed location in California," Simmons' manager, Richard Catalano, reported in a statement to ABC News. "After a few days of battling severe indigestion and discomfort while eating, we agreed it was best for him to seek treatment. He’s already feeling better and is expected to make a full recovery."
Simmons has been out of the public eye for about three years, and his abrupt departure into solitude sparked rumors about his health. More recently, the podcast Missing Richard Simmons, hosted by one of Simmons' former workout class attendees, made headlines for a variety of wild claims about his whereabouts, including that he was being held hostage by his housekeeper.
For his part, Simmons has mostly stayed out of the rumor mill, but his family has assured reporters that his health is fine and that he just needed some time to himself to recover from surgery on his knee. "My brother is fine," Simmons' 70-year-old brother, Lenny Simmons, told People last month. "He’s not sick. There’s nothing medically wrong with him at all. After 40-some odd years, he just decided that he wants to rest. He’s 68 years old now and he’s in good health, but he just wants time for himself."
Catalano basically said the same thing. "He was ready to quiet down is what he’s told me, and it doesn’t mean he’s done, but for now, he’s enjoying the time away from the public," he explained.
Still, this recent hospitalization for Simmons is bound to spark new rumors. Is it possible that Simmons is sick with something more serious, and this is his manager's attempt to cover it up? We sure hope not.