Despite recent rumors, Richard Simmons is alive and well

You’ve probably heard a lot about him in recent weeks. Thanks to a new podcast, fans everywhere are once again invested in the safety of Richard Simmons, known best for his fitness techniques of decades past. Simmons was once one of the most visible celebrities around, brightening up talk shows and helping those across America shed some pounds. But these days? He hasn’t been seen in awhile.

And by awhile, we mean a very, very long time. It’s been reported that his last public appearance was on CNN back in January 2014. But it’s not just television shows — fans haven’t seen him out and about, or at any of his prior exercise classes.

While it’s been a mystery for some time, the brand new podcast Missing Richard Simmons has revived an interest in the case.

The good news is, the LAPD has reported him to be alive, well, and not in a hostage situation. (Yes, it was speculated that his housekeeper, Teresa, was holding him hostage. Hey, when people are concerned, various conclusions are reached.)

"Teresa has been working with him for 27 years. So, holding him hostage is the biggest, I mean…Teresa is the housekeeper, she's the caretaker, she is extraordinary, she is amazing, she takes impeccable care of Richard and she has for as long as I have been working with Richard. So that is a complete load of crap," said a representative for Simmons.

According to his spokesperson, things haven’t been different with Simmons for quite some time. In fact, he was slowly easing into a more private life.

"People claim that it happened overnight. It really didn't. We were turning down stuff for years and just kind of quieting down, and when he decides that he wants to come back, that's when he'll come back, and when that will be, I have no idea or if he will at all," he said.

This clashes with the viewpoint of the host of Missing Richard Simmons, Dan Taberski, who was not only an acquaintance of Simmons, but a student. In fact, he remembers the exact day when Simmons stopped showing up to his “Slimmons” class, and the disappointment that he and his classmates felt.

While it’s great to have an official report from the LAPD, we can’t help but think that Missing Richard Simmons is the current top podcast on iTunes for a reason. People still really, really care for the fitness legend, and want to make sure he’s living his happiest life.