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Celebrities with Multiple Sclerosis

Written by Monica Gullon and Medically Reviewed by Scott Pearlman, M.D.

10. Richard Pryor

Richard Pryor’s ground-breaking raw comedy broke racial barriers and made him one of the most famous comedians of all time. But it’s his 17-year battle with multiple sclerosis for which he is remembered. "To be diagnosed was the hardest thing because I didn't know what they were talking about," he said. "And the doctor said `Don't worry, in three months you'll know.'” Despite his diagnosis, Pryor continued to work, earning an Emmy in 1995 for playing an MS patient on the TV series “Chicago Hope.” He turned his adversity into comedy gold, taping “I Ain't Dead Yet, #*%$#@!!” in 2003. Once, at a performance he asked the audience if there was a doctor in the house. When a hand finally went up, Pryor said, “Doctor, I need to know one thing. What the *&#@ is MS?" Pryor died in 2005 at age 65, but his honesty and valor continues to inspire those who live with MS.