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Richard Simmons Makes First Public Statement in 3 Years: ‘I’m Not Missing’

Simmons says he’s just ”a little under the weather“

For the first time since stepping out of the public eye in 2014, fitness guru Richard Simmons released a statement to his fans to reassure them that he is “not missing.”

“Aren’t you sick of hearing and reading about me?!” Simmons quipped in a statement sent to People Magazine. “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.”

Simmons had checked himself into the hospital on Monday, citing severe indigestion. Public interest in Simmons had been revived earlier this year thanks to “Missing Richard Simmons,” a podcast miniseries by Dan Taberski, a filmmaker and close friend of Simmons. In the podcast, which ran for six episodes and ended last month, Taberski chronicled his search for Simmons, who ended his long-running exercise class and removed himself from the public spotlight three years ago.

Simmons thanked his fans for their well wishes and said that the past few days have served as a learning experience for him.

“This has reminded me that when you need help you can’t be afraid to reach out and ask for it,” he wrote. “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!”