Jerry Lewis Quits Telethon Gig

Comedian Jerry Lewis, 85, is stepping down as the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s national chairman and will not host this year’s Labor Day telethon. Lewis has hosted the telethon every year since 1966. The nonprofit agency announced the news on Wednesday night, calling Lewis a “world-class” humanitarian and thanking him for his many years of work with the MDA. Though they did not explain the reason for his departure, Lewis’ health problems may be to blame. In recent years he has slowed down due to a crippling back condition, heart issues, and pulmonary fibrosis. Lewis’ very first Labor Day weekend telethon in 1966 raised more than $1 million pledges, while his final telethon last year raised $59 million.