So far, 2017 has been a year filled with unexpected and heartbreaking celebrity deaths.
The world lost legendary music icons like Della Reese, Tom Petty, Chris Cornell, and Chester Bennington.
We also said goodbye to several prominent actors, including Sam Shepard, Martin Landau, Adam West, and Robert Guillaume.
For that reason, it’s understandable for fans to be a little more concerned than usual about the health and well-being of some of their favorite actors.
Star Wars fans had quite the scare when Mark Hamill was spotted in a New York airport looking a bit worse for wear, only weeks before the upcoming latest installment in the franchise, The Last Jedi, is set to hit theaters.
Fans took to Twitter to voice their concern, and one even tweeted at him directly to ask what was wrong. Thankfully, Mark is doing just find and had an explanation for why he was seen in a wheelchair.
Read on for more about why Mark was in a wheelchair despite not being ill or injured!
Thumbnail Photo: Wikimedia Commons / Gage Skidmore // Flickr / neovain
Mark gave his fans quite the scare when multiple news outlets reported that he’d been spotted in a wheelchair.
Star Wars lovers were particularly nervous, because they’d already experienced one unexpected and heartbreaking loss in the last year.
Carrie Fisher, Mark’s onscreen Star Wars twin sister, passed away unexpectedly on December 27, 2016, a few days after suffering cardiac arrest during a transatlantic flight from London to Los Angeles.
At the time, Carrie was only 60 years old and hadn’t been in the news for any health issues, so her death was very shocking.
Mark, at 66, is already a few years older than Carrie.
So fans were understandably protective of and nervous about the iconic actor, who is beloved for his role as Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars film series and for voicing The Joker in Batman: The Animated Series, among other DC Comics animated works.
Star Wars fans are likely equally concerned about the well-being of Harrison Ford, another iconic actor from the film franchise.
Harrison, of course, is doing just fine. In fact, the 75-year-old actor was recently spotted being a real-life hero when he helped save a woman who accidentally drove her car off the highway in front of him!
TMZ and the Daily Mail both reported that Mark had been seen in a wheelchair at JFK Airport, being pushed around while wearing a wide brimmed hat pulled low over his face and holding his little dog in his lap. Daily Mail reported that Mark was “fragile-looking” and “a shadow of his normal self” when he arrived in New York at 5:00 a.m. on November 28, 2017.
One fan even took to Twitter to ask Mark directly whether he was OK.
“What happened Mark? Are you ok?” Brent Aldrich wrote, tagging the actor.
Thankfully, Mark saw the tweet and quickly responded, putting his fans’ worries to rest.
Mark explained that he’d tried out “the old ‘wheelchair trick'” when passing through the airport in order to avoid people who wanted to get his autograph on merchandise just to resell it at astronomical prices to “true fans” later on Ebay.
“#TheyCanGoForceThemselves #NoMoreAirportSignings,” he wrote, referring to the badgering “autograph salesmen/dealers.”
Plenty of fans were relieved to hear that Mark was doing well, and they were even more impressed with the way he’d handled the people who constantly harass him and his family.
Mark later tweeted that he and his family had arrived in New York just in time to celebrate the birthday of the same little dog he was spotted carrying while in the wheelchair.
“We arrived in NYC just in time for the 6th birthday of none other than Millie Grace Hamill! Beloved family pet, world traveler & trusted career advisor. LOVE that PUP!!!” he wrote alongside several photos of Millie and the family during her birthday celebration.
We’re so glad to hear that Mark is doing well — that he enjoyed celebrating with his beloved pup, Millie!
Don’t forget to SHARE this story on Facebook with other Star Wars fans!