Richard Simmons’ representative is denying a tabloid story that the reclusive fitness expert has had sex-change surgery.
Tom Estey on Wednesday shot down a National Enquirer article that claimed Simmons has had hormone treatments and breast implants over the past two years in order to transition to a woman named Fiona. The story, he told Newsday, is “not true, a complete fabrication, and we will not dignify the Enquirer with any type of response” such as a lawsuit.
He additionally elucidated to People magazine that the 67-year-old Simmons “is not transitioning into a woman. He has decided to live quietly the last few years. He had knee surgery a few years ago and has a bum knee. He is still on Twitter and Facebook and works behind the scenes continuing to inspire and motivate people to lose weight. When he decides to come back, he will come back.”
Estey did confirm a report from earlier this week that said Simmons had been hospitalized over the weekend. He told People that the aerobics-video maven was admitted “for dehydration and was out the next day. He’s a human being. He was in the public eye for over three decades, but he deserves his privacy. He should be able to have a private life. He just needed a break. He is still taking care of the people who need his help.”
In March, Simmons assured fans that despite a report otherwise, his prolonged public absence was not because his longtime housekeeper and friend Teresa Reveles was controlling him, as a former assistant had claimed. Simmons had been making 250 personal appearances a year until dropping out of sight in 2014 due to what he said at the time was a knee injury.