Bruce Willis’ wife thanks fans for ‘support’ following star’s aphasia diagnosis: ‘Your prayers really help’

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Bruce Willis’ wife, Emma Heming Willis’, is thankful for the star’s loyal fans.

The model took to Instagram Story on Thursday evening and thanked the public for showing support and rallying around her. The message was shared days after the 67-year-old’s family announced on social media that the actor was diagnosed with aphasia and is retiring.

“Your love, support, compassion, prayers really help,” wrote the 43-year-old. “I’m grateful.”

“Thank you from the bottom of my heart,” concluded Heming Willis, who share daughters Mabel, 9, and Evelyn, 7, with Willis. The couple tied the knot in 2009.

Actor Bruce Willis and model Emma Heming Willis tied the knot in 2009.
(Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

Scout Willis, daughter of Willis and his ex-wife Demi Moore, also expressed her appreciation for the “outpouring of love” her family has received since they disclosed her father’s diagnosis.

“The exquisite outpouring of love that I am experiencing right now is just blowing me away,” the 30-year-old wrote on her Instagram story Wednesday.

“Thank you all for showing up with so much tenderness and stunning love for my daddio and my whole family!” she added.

The family shared that Willis was diagnosed with aphasia, a condition that causes a loss of the ability to understand or express speech. The family shared that it has been impacting his cognitive abilities.

(L-R) Rumer Willis, Demi Moore, Bruce Willis, Scout Willis, Emma Heming Willis and Tallulah Willis attend Demi Moore’s ‘Inside Out’ Book Party on September 23, 2019, in Los Angeles, California. 
(Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for goop)

“As a result of this and with much consideration, Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him,” read the statement signed by Willis’ wife, Moore, and his five children, Rumer, Scout, Tallulah, Mabel and Evelyn.

“We are moving through this as a strong family unit, and wanted to bring his fans in because we know how much he means to you, as you do to him,” they said. “As Bruce always says, ‘Live it up’ and together we plan to do just that.”

There are many potential causes of aphasia. It often occurs after a stroke or head injury, but can also develop gradually due to a slow-growing brain tumor or a disease that causes degenerative damage, like Alzheimer’s disease. It’s treated primarily with speech therapy and learning non-verbal means of communication.

Willis’ family didn’t divulge what caused his aphasia. Representatives for the actor declined to comment.

Bruce Willis and Emma Heming Willis share two daughters.
(Photo by Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The news about Willis, one of Hollywood’s most beloved actors, immediately spread online as fans reacted. His four-decade career has amassed more than $5 billion in box office worldwide,

Willis had been working steadily and frequently. Renowned for films like “Die Hard,” “Pulp Fiction” and “The Sixth Sense,” Willis has in recent years churned out straight-to-video thrillers. Last year, he starred in a staggering eight films. Most came and went quietly, including titles like “Cosmic Sin,” “Out of Death” and “Deadlock.”

Most recently, Willis starred in February’s “Gasoline Alley” and “A Day to Die,” released in early March. Willis has already shot at least six more films due out in 2022 and 2023, including “Die Like Lovers,” “Corrective Measures” and “The Wrong Place.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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