A former friend of Richard Simmons is making wild claims about the fitness guru, while the star’s rep is vehemently denying the rumors.
Mauro Oliveira, Richard’s former friend and masseur, told the “Missing Richard Simmons” podcast that he confronted the 68-year-old over reports his housekeeper Teresa Reveles was controlling his life.
“It was 6 p.m., and I went into his house,” Oliveira said of the last time he saw his friend in May 2014. “He was sitting in the living room, and he was very weak physically and mentally. He was trembling. He said, ‘Mauro, I called you here because we cannot see each other anymore. I’m just going to stay here.’ I thought of the worst. I thought the worst was going to happen. I thought he was suicidal.”
When Reveles realized Mauro was in the house, “She started screaming like a witch, ‘No, no, no, no — get out, get out! I don’t want him here!’ Richard looked at me and said, ‘You got to go.’ I said, ‘Really? Is she controlling your life now?’ and he said yes. And that I have to leave.”
Meanwhile, Simmons’ rep Tom Estey told People the claim was a “complete load of crap” and that the star was just taking a break from the spotlight. The magazine's attempts to reach Reveles were unsuccessful.
Simmons had previously denied rumors about Reveles’ role in his life a year ago, when he called in to the “Today” show, saying, “No one is holding me in my house as a hostage... I do what I want to do as I've always done.”
There is renewed interest in Simmons’ whereabouts after his former friend Dan Taberski started the popular “Missing Richard Simmons” podcast.
Simmons has not been seen in public for 1,100 days, according to People magazine.