(AP) -Comedian Jerry Lewis is no longer serving as the Muscular Dystrophy
Association’s national chairman and won’t be appearing on this year’s Labor Day
telethon, according to an announcement made Wednesday night by the nonprofit
Lewis, 85, has been the MDA’s national chairman since the early 1950s and has
hosted the Labor Day Muscular Dystrophy Association telethon since 1966.
He announced in May that he was retiring as host of the telethon that has become synonymous with his name. But Lewis added that he planned to make his final appearance on this year’s Sept. 4, show and planned on continuing to serve as
MDA’s national chairman.
MDA Chairman of the Board R. Rodney Howell said in a statement that Lewis
"will not be appearing on the telethon" and "we will not be replacing him as MDA
national chairman." The statement did not provide any further explanation for
Lewis has in recent years battled a debilitating back condition, heart issues
and the crippling lung disease pulmonary fibrosis.