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Sumner Redstone Greets Viacom Shareholders From a Chair at Annual Meeting

Viacom Executive Chairman Sumner Redstone made it to the company’s annual shareholders meeting, rebutting reports that his health would prevent his appearing

Viacom Executive Chairman Sumner Redstone made it to Viacom’s annual shareholders’ meeting on Thursday, even joking about reports that he was too enfeebled to attend.

According to various media outlets, Redstone quoted Mark Twain in explaining that earlier reports of his plans not to attend were exaggerated.

Over the past couple of weeks, there was much speculation that the 88-year old Redstone’s health would prevent him from going to the meeting.

Also read: Viacom's Sumner Redstone: The Mogul Named 'Sue!'

Instead, the meeting began with a curtain being pulled back and Redstone sitting in a chair. Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman and general counsel Michael Fricklas joined Redstone on stage and Dauman ran the meeting.

Redstone did not answer questions or speak beyond his opening statements.

Also read: Redstone: I'll Never Die, but Newspapers Will

Given the reports of Redstone’s ill health, there is also a great deal of talk around who might succeed him. Daughter and vice chair Shari, who attended the meeting, had been the presumed successor before tensions flared between the two a few years ago.

But in recent years, Dauman’s name has been batted around quite a bit. He succeeded Tom Freston as CEO in 2006.