Former Clevelander Nick Cellini apologizes for Steve Gleason hoax on Atlanta radio show

ATLANTA - A station official says the cast of an Atlanta sports radio show has been fired after mocking a former NFL player who has Lou Gehrig's disease.

The show, Mayhem in the AM, was broadcast Monday morning on 790 The Zone. In a statement, general manager Rick Mack said the station regrets comments made about ex-New Orleans Saints safety Steve Gleason.

The 36-year-old suffers from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. ALS patients lose the ability to speak and move, which happened to Gleason.

The station lists the hosts at Nick Cellini, Steak Shapiro and Chris Dimino. But Mack didn't give the names of those fired.

Cellini took to Twitter to apologize, calling it a stupid attempt at humor. Listeners on the station's Facebook page called for the hosts' termination. Cellini's bio on the station's site says he got "his start as one the youngest sports anchors in Cleveland, Ohio television history."

Gleason played for the Saints between 2000 and 2006.

Cellini told NewsChannel 5 in a written statement,

"I deeply regret the ill attempt at humor from this morning's show. I have personally apologized to Steve Gleason and his wife.  The comments were insensitive and offensive and do not represent my personal views regarding the severity of the disease. I also apologize to the fans of the New Orleans Saints, the NFL organization and the families who have struggled with ALS and am profoundly sorry for the hurt I have caused; that was not the intent.  I vow to work with Team Gleason in the fight against ALS and support the cause in any way I can."

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