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The Curious Case Of GH Guest Star and Fitness Guru Richard Simmons: His Rep Says He's Not Being Held Against His Will, But "Simply Taking A Break From Public Life"



Over the weekend after a report surfaced in the New York Daily News entiled, ‘The Haunted Twilight of Richard Simmons,” that cites sources both on and off-the-record, who claim General Hospital guest star and fitness instructor, Richard Simmons is being “held against his will” and is purposely being kept away from friends and family.”

Simmons representive Tom Estey has fired back and told USA Today, that those claims are “ludicrous,” and that Richard “does not want to be in the public eye right now.”

The NY Daily News feature also reported that Simmons stopped returning calls and emails more than two years ago to his friends, and that his behavior seemed unusual.   Estey also denied this report and said Simmons ‘mental health is just fine”.

Estey also shared that the “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” fitness favorite is “working behind the scenes to continue to help those millions of people worldwide in need of his assistance and on several projects to be announced soon.”

Mauro Oliveira, Simmons’ former assistant, told the NY Daily News that during his last visit to Simmons’ mansion, the trainer told him they could no longer see each other.  Oliveira also claimed that Simmons told him his longtime live-in housekeeper, Teresa Reveles, is now controlling his life.

In 2014, Simmons shut down reports of a depression following a serious knee injury with a statement via his facebook page: ” I am so touched by the outpouring of love and concern I have received today. I have had a tough time dealing with this injury, as it is keeping me from doing what I truly love to do and that is to teach classes around the world.”

GH fans last saw Simmons as part of the series 50th anniversary Nurses’ Ball storyline in 2013.  In it, Richard taunted Lucy Coe (Lynn Herring) and was eventually carried out of the ball in a hilarious moment.   Richard’s first go round in Port Charles was his recurring role as himself in episodes from 1979-1983.

Even this weekend, Simmons official facebook page has had numerous updates including a post that says:  “The only limits you have are the ones you give yourself. Smash through them!”

So, what do you think of the report from the New York Daily News?  Is Richard being a recluse, or just taking a break from public life? Are people he knows trying to smear his name?  GH fans have always loved Richard’s returns to Port Charles for its nostalgia and quirky fun.   Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Richard was so roundly rediculed during is last appearance on GH (during the Nurses’ Ball) that I guess the pain simply sent him into reclusion. His silence and absence from public view is certainly is very understandable. I feel much compassion for Richard who was a big part of GH in its heyday with his exercise classes deserves to be treated with much more respect. He has shared himself generously for many years. I say give him his time and let him choose whether or not he ever wants to come out and be cannabalized by the fickle public again. Rest, Richard; you’ver earned it. My prayers are with you.

Is that really him on facebook or someone else…i say recluse.

I believe every word printed in the New York Times. How could someone so media hungry suddenly just stop appearing with the meager excuse of “i just don’t want to be in the public eye right now”. That was 2 years ago. Something is up. Look at the history of other Hollywood “recluses”. There was something wrong. Mickey Rooney most recently. Howard Hughes. And a few others. It is not “normal” for this to be happening. Especially with someone who was so blatantly public. His closest friends are not just saying it for no reason. I can think of another recluse who ended up dying in a mysterious fashion and that was Doris Duke. I think that any one who knows Mr Simmons closely and personally should give up until they see him alone and are able to investigate his ability to care for himself without the presence of his brother, house staff and agents who only want to keep the peace. I pray for this man. He is not a favorite of mine by any stretch BUT he does not deserve to be held back and treated in this manner. If they have nothing to hide, then let his friends come by and see him without his “staff” present.

Brian Wilson was controlled by his psychiatrist for years! I hope Richard is of sound mind. He might just be burnt out and tired of the circus! I wish him well and hope that he returns to GH! Is there a NB for 2016?

I laud this man… for his steadfast be

at times i thought it was a circus…as he was poked prodded and made light

because he was so far ahead of his time?

was he gay
was he asexual
was he that endearing

he’s Richard Simmons

created in his own image

his own image

imagination run amok

imagination wild

imagination steered

did that leg injury PARK

he simply Parked his life on his own

I hope this

Richard Simmons reigned

He is an unselfish man in a VERY selfish business!

Really odd. Just read about this in the news yesterday and it doesn’t fit the Richard persona we have all grown to expect. Time will tell I guess, but I hope he’s alright.

Just head an exclusive interview on the Today Show with Richard. He’s jus saying he wanted to take time out for himself, he was tired of the travel, has been taking walks, etc. but when he’s ready he’ll come back stronger.

Isn’t taking a break from public life the same thing as being reclusive, therefore making on a recluse?
There’s nothing from with being a recluse. I tend to be one from time to time.

Being a ”reclusive” is no outside contact..
I doubt he would be tweeting and facebooking, if a reclusive..
hmm ok.. someone else could be tweeting and facebooking as Richard, a reclusive would not put himself out to the public in any way..

Hey, su,
You’re lucky you don’t have to work at staying lean. Neither do I, as some of us are naturally slim, albeit I never had a big appetite.
However, the point of a work-out is to maintain a healthy body through exercise….you know, a toned body, cardio and all that is necessary to stay fit.
I remember Richard Simmons as a little girl. My Au Pair/Nanny had these videos of Richard and his ‘dancers’…..I would dance along with her. So, I remember him well.
I had no idea he periodically appeared on GH until I saw him at at the Nurses’ Ball with Lucy.
He made an announcement on air, the other day, saying he was fine and needed rest.

I’m hoping he just needs a break. The guy has been in front of the world for probably 40 years now! Other than mind control [Helena] the ONLY other thing that may have happened is that he gained a lot of weight?

Hey, Timmm,
Would it be possible for Richard to avoid the public eye because he has gained weight? I believe the reason he became a health nut was because of his heavy stature, and, therefore was obsessed with maintaining a healthy, fit body.
Perhaps he was bed-ridden after his injury and gained his weight back. …..Too embarrassed to face people? He shouldn’t be. Poor guy. He probably feels he let his fans down? Only speculation, Timmm.
So much emphasis is put on weight and looks in our society, I am glad about all the hoopla in changing the ‘image’ of what someone is supposed to look like. Look at the new models gracing the cover of magazines, lately. Good for them.
I like Richard, but, I had not even given not seeing him a second thought….well, I assumed he had retired.

My apologies for this post which did not make sense.I meant to way there is nothing wrong with being a recluse. And I wrote “on” when I meant to write one.
IN any case, hope Richard is doing okay. Let us give him the space he needs.

Yes, I agree.


I nest in my own home… for me

I can’t take on celebrity … that’s a whole ‘nother arena that’s outside my scope

spotlight… camera action… woah! I like my mind

I laud Richard Simmons… because he walked the walk…

even I don’t know that he’s like me… gay

I thought… at times.. this reflects

I grew and love keeping myself company

I love my husband Eileen Davidson !

I respect you Richard

rest take care and celebrate

I know very little about the man,, saw him in GH, once and dont recall where else..
He is a dancing exercise guy, yes..
I have never been overweight I maintain a lean weight so never had need for weight loss and am not familiar with all that Richard does.. He appeared to be vibrant.

Whatever his personal status is, I hope he never returns to GH.

Knock that off who knows what is really happening,,, he may be a bit annoying but he’s always a hoot on GH

I feel the same about Sabrrrrina!

Awwww! Why? He seems like such a nice perdon.

I hope Richard is OK, rumor is he gained lots of weight. If that is true, he is very depressed and won’t go out in public. If he does TMZ will get info and pictures of Richard. I enjoyed Richard on GH, with Lucy. They were funny.

In my mind he will always be the guy teaching “exercise class” at the Campus Disco where Luke and Laura worked. I was only 6 years old at the time but I remember those scenes well. I hope he is ok.

The man who normally has an outgoing,energetic personality sufferers a debilitating knee injury that prevents him from doing what he loves most.
Hmm… could naturally assume that would have an effect on him,and he may very well be taking a break from the public eye.
That being said – if he is in a diminished capacity ,say because he suffered a stroke or something I would do more investigating as there are unscrupulous people out there that will take advantage of the vulnerable.

I just heard… some one… character… herald.. they are not going to get toxic

let toxicity become them

fight the good fight…

is Richard simmons strong enough… I certainly do think… his mindset .. for all the endeavor and cause celeb he’s mined

is that fragile…

debilitating is an altogether another outset

My best to this man

something not right, where is his family.

I agree luisa..if I said I was being held hostage my posse would be a gang of nieces and nephews with my brother leading the brigade. .no wilting tulips here lol

I hope he is okay and just wants some Richard time! I love the guy. He has helped so many people with their lives. His appearances on Howard Stern are legendary! I wish he would come back on GH as a rehab specialist and not as himself. He can get Kiki to walk again. OMG, him and Roger Howarth in the same scenes together would be priceless!

I love Richard Simmons. He is a kind and caring man who has helped millions of people over the years lose weight and get back into healthy living. I loved him in General Hospital and would love to see him come back. I think after he hurt his knee he couldn’t do the things he use to do and just wanted time away from the public but for someone who spent most of his life telling people to get going on exercise and don’t let anything stand in your way, he needs to practice what he preaches and come out in public if for no other reason than to show his fans who are worried about him he’s ok.

he catapulted a whole ‘nother mindset to the forefront

a be all you can be

infectious for some… a ray of care… woah I don’t give a damn either… let’s go

he moved

I hope he is ok and knows that people are sending positive thoughts his way. He was a colorful personality that brought a lot of positivity into other peoples lives.

Respect and admire Richard. Hoping he is OK.

Well, this is from the New York Daily News, which certainly has a reputation for exaggeration, sensationalization, and building something out of nothing. Let’s hope that’s the case here.

That said, we’ve certainly heard of enough cases like this—with the wrong people alienating some rich/famous individual from everyone so as to control the bank accounts–to warrant concern. I do hope that he’s all right and nothing’s amiss.

richard was interviewed on the today show by phone today – i still believe he is being held against his will…………….something just doesn’t feel right……….
the richard simmons we all know & love would not go into some sort of hiding – he would have at least did a farewell tour around the country or gave his fans a heads up………….
if everything is okay he needs to make an appearance not a phone call………….jmo

naww the guy is fine he is being eccentric ..
most likely– when people of fame lose their celebrity appearance, bodies that made them a celebrity, they give up and hide..

I agree elm1951 – if everything was ok, he would be interviewed in person. Very fishy. It reminds me of the weird stuff that happened with Brittany Murphy’s death.

Oh, my gosh, Abruzzfan. I remember the Brittany Murphy’s tragedy. That story did have a suspicious ring to it; compounded with the fact that her husband died in the same manner?….not too long after her.

I wouldn’t take anything from New York Daily News seriously. They seem worse than The National Enquirer.

General Hospital

Steve Burton’s Ex-Wife Sheree Gustin Gives Birth to Her Fifth Child, Weeks After Their Divorce Was Finalized

Sheree Gustin, the ex-wife of General Hospital star, Steve Burton (Jason Morgan) welcomed her newborn daughter into the world on February 16th. The little one who’s name is Addy Jay weighed in at 5 lbs., 5 oz at the time of her birth. This is Gustin’s fifth child.

Gustin’s partner, who was in an Instagram story with her and their baby, remains unidentified. This is the second child of Gustin’s within a year or so of each other, that is not the biological child of Burton’s. She previously had daughter Isabella back in February of 2023.

The news of the arrival of Addy Jay comes on the heels of Burton finalizing his divorce from his former wife of 23 years back in December of 2023.  In the divorce settlement, Steve and Sheree have joint legal and physical custody of their minor children. Brooklyn, 8, and Jack, 17. The two also share a daughter McKenna who is 20.

Photo: ShereeLynnIG

Burton originally filed for divorce in July 0f 2022. In court documents, the two separated in March of that year as Burton cited “irreconcilable differences.” When Sheree announced the impending birth of her fourth child, Burton took to his Instagram and clarified, “She recently announced that she’s expecting her 4th child. The child is not mine. We are still co-parenting our three beautiful kids. We would appreciate privacy at this time. Much luv, Steve.”

Photo: SBurtonIG

Gustin, who is a fitness guru, now goes by Sherrie Lynn on her official Instagram account. Since her divorce from Burton, and the births of her most recent children, Sherrie has not addressed the situation publicly.

Meanwhile, General Hospital fans are anxiously awaiting Burton’s return as Jason Morgan on the ABC soap opera with his first episode back slated for March 4th. Just how Jason will be revealed to be alive after a cave collapsed on him, and he was believed to have died, is one of great mystery for soap fans.

So, share your thoughts on the news of the birth of Sheree’s fifth child Addy Jay via the comment section below.

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General Hospital

GH Alum Vinessa Antoine Returns For Season 2 of CBS Dramedy ‘So Help Me Todd’

Vinessa Antoine (ex-Jordan Ashford, General Hospital) has added quite an impressive lists of acting credits since announcing she was exiting the ABC soap opera back in July 0f 2018.

Since then Antoine has appeared in TV series north of the border in Canada and here in the U.S including her leading role in CBC’s Diggstown. Now comes word, that Vinessa is back for a second season in her role on the CBS comedy-drama, So Help Me Todd.

In the series, Vinessa plays the role of Alex Parker. Taking to her Instagram, the actress shared, “Alex Parker’s shenanigans from season 1 continue this season in episode 3 onward. Do check it out. Enjoy!!”

Photo: CBS

So Help Me Todd stars Oscar winner Marcia Gay Harden as Margaret and Skylar Astin as Todd. Margaret is a successful defense attorney, while Todd is a private investigator but known as the black sheep of the family. In the premise of the series, Todd has criminal charges dropped against him, in exchange for working at mom’s law firm as they crack cases and defend clients.

Photo: JPI

Antoine plays Alex, a forensic accountant who gets in the good graces of the character of Lyle (Tristen M. Winger), who is an investigator at the law firm. However, in a twist, it’s revealed that Alex is actually investigating him. The story picks up in season 2 from here.

Vinessa’s first episode of season 2 will air on Thursday February 29th  9 p.m. ET on CBS and it streams the next day on Paramount+

So, looking forward to catching Vinessa on So Help Me Todd? Comment below.

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General Hospital

Michael E. Knight Exits General Hospital For Now

Daytime favorite Michael E. Knight has left his role of Martin Grey on ABC’s General Hospital. However, it appears this move is a temporary one.

Knight, who has played the recurring role of Laura Collins’ (Genie Francis) brother and a love interest for Lucy Coe (Lynn Herring), began in the role on the ABC daytime drama series since 2019.

GH wrote off the legal eagle when on the February 12th episode, Martin left Port Charles to visit his mother who has been in failing health. On that episode, Lucy tries to let Martin know how she truly feels for him, but Martin isn’t willing to listen to any of it, since he can’t deal with her ongoing relationship with her ex Scott Baldwin (Kin Shriner) and he breaks things off with her.

Photo: ABC

According to Soap Opera Digest, Knight will be off the canvas temporarily. No dates were cited as to when he would return. With the series undergoing  a writing regime shift with Patrick Mulcahey and Elizabeth Korte taking over the head scribe duties from Chris Van Etten and Dan O’Connor, it will be interesting to see if they bring the character back sooner than later.

Photo: JPI

Viewers know Knight best for his Daytime Emmy-winning role as Tad Martin on All My Children; a role he played on and off from 1982-2011. Knight returned to the Prospect Park version of the series when AMC finally was rebooted online in 2013. Later In 2015, he joined The Young and the Restless as Dr. Simon Neville in a role that he played until 2016.

So, how do you feel about Michael E. Knight exiting General Hospital? Will the series bring him back? Were you rooting for Martin and Lucy to find happiness with one another? Comment below.


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