Steve Gleason wrote on his organization’s Facebook page 6/18 that he accepts the apologies of 790 The Zone Atlanta hosts Nick Cellini, Steak Shapiro and Chris Dimino, who mocked his ALS disease in a skit Monday morning and were subsequently fired.
The 36-year-old Gleason, a former safety who played for the New Orleans Saints who was diagnosed with ALS in 2011, thanked the public for their support on the Facebook page for Team Gleason, his non-profit that works to help others with ALS.
“‘Defend Team Gleason’ now has been officially redefined. Additionally, the DJs have provided genuine apology. Received and accepted. We have all made mistakes in this life. How we learn from our mistakes is the measure of who we are,” he wrote. “I think everyone can learn from this event. It’s clear to me that, on a national & global scale, ALS is not understood, which is part of why it’s under funded and largely ignored. In the past 36 hours lots of people have been talking. Let’s talk about this… There are zero treatments for ALS. If you take any action as a result of this event, I prefer it to be action to end ALS.”
Cellini, Shapiro and Dimino were fired after a 6/17 skit where two of them took a call from a third host who pretended to be Gleason by using a voice that sounded automated — mimicking another ALS patient, world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking.
All three took to Twitter on Monday evening to apologize to fans and others who criticized the segment.
RBR-TVBR observation: Apology accepted and hopefully lesson learned for the three hosts, as well as any others doing live radio. There’s a lot of pressure to be entertaining and drive ratings, but this is not the way.