Legendary comic Paul Mooney’s medical crisis

paul mooneyMany people in the elite black comedy world have kept a secret for well over a year; their friend, mentor and colleague, Paul Mooney, is sick.

Many people who do not know Mooney spread rumors or made horrible assumptions about his health. But Mooney has been battling  prostate cancer for well over a year and it has taken its toll. The once robust, burly, laughing black man now uses a wheelchair and cane.

But Mooney hid it well; he continued to do his stand-up comedy routine. But now he needs the assistance of a cane and someone who has his back, his brother, Rudy Mooney.

“I’ve been with Paul since the start of this thing,” stated Rudy Mooney to rolling out and Rudy will be there until the end. But it does not look like that end is coming soon. Paul Mooney is still traveling all over the country, from coast to coast and even Canada. The longtime Oakland, California, resident can’t and won’t sit still.

Because Mooney is an entertainer, the stage is his source of income besides residuals from writing. Mooney has written for “Chappelle’s Show,” “The Larry Sanders Show,” “In Living Color,” “Pryor’s Place,” “The Richard Pryor Show,” “Saturday Night Live,” “Good Times” and “Sanford and Son” among others.

Recently while appearing on the “Arsenio Hall Show,” Paul Mooney was shown in medical distress. Those who know him were saddened to see his performance. Mooney walks out with a cane and takes his chair. He then begins his routine and loses his way several times.

Mo Barnes
Mo Barnes

"Mo Betta" Maurice "Mo" Barnes is a graduate of Morehouse College and Political Scientist based in Atlanta. Mo is also a Blues musician.

  1. Didn’t Paul Mooney deny this claim on FB in October of last year? He also listed his nephew’s (Sean Vaughn Scott) contact information for “real media inquiries.” Idk…?

      1. Well, yeah that’s obvious. I’m referring to the cancer diagnosis that Paul Mooney dispelled on FB. He stated that he had surgery, but not stage four cancer.

  2. Thinking of you and sending hope Paul Mooney! You’ve made me laugh alot…and I hope you can feel the happiness you’ve given me reflected to you now. You’ll beat this!

  3. Super sad to hear this bcuz Mooney is a true legend. He keeps it real & he’s so raw with his comedy. I recently saw him & I knew something was wrong. Prayers are with you!

  4. Paul Mooney is one of the most brilliant, talented, and intelligent comedians and writers of all time. I wish him all the best and will keep him lifted in prayer. Love this man!!

  5. So sad to hear this! I absolutely LOVE Paul Mooney. The man is a comic genius. I did notice something was off with him that night on Arsenio, but I pray that he will pull through this and will be praying for him.

  6. I love paul mooney the only comedian who had me laughing for three hours straight and had to get up to leave out the room to catch my breath

    1. He had me cracking up for hours, but I was afraid to get up because 1) I would miss something and )2 he would crack on me. I am a prostate cancer survivor and my prayers and thoughts are with Brother Mooney.

  7. This explains the Arsenio set as he most likely had ‘Chemo Brain”. Where the chemotherapy can bring on a slight form of dementia. Sad, but those who talked crap about him for it will shut up now.

    1. Yes J Boogie – The Royal King of Comedy. Saw him in Harlem one evening on my way home – I said hello he smiled and said “Hello Beautiful” I laughed he said what’s funny, I was like I don’t know – just Paul Mooney I guess made me blush. God Bless him…he is just funny!

  8. Hearing this HURTS my heart 🙁 I saw Paul M and Dick Gregory a few weeks back, and Paul just didn’t seem like himself 🙁 No wonder. God Bless.

    1. God Bless you Mr Mooneyyou made my days in so many ways laughter is so positive and healthy for you in your time of need its like they sing a song through the savage beast well laughter does too. Rene’ Northington from Indianapolis Indiana god bless again

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  10. I saw him on Arsenio and it scared me a little. I thought maybe he had a heart attack. You can see and hear the difference and it was disappointing. I made sure to set my recorder in case I would miss the show. I pray he gets better somehow, but either way he is in my prayers!!!

  11. this is horrible journalism at the least. i’ve seen him perform several times and in this instance, i never saw where he lost his way “several” times??? and he went impromptu at the end. great job paul. salute to a legend

  12. I may not be mr. religon but I know the power of prayer, especially when you’re doing it for others. Lord – Ease Mr. Mooney’s suffering, whatever it is. HEAR MY PRAYER!!!

  13. Paul, thanks for having the courage to say the things many of us were thinking, and things we wished we could have thought of. We laugh because the way you address it is cracking up funny but a lot of truth and white people need to hear it. Even those who claim to be our friends because they need to get some sense of how they way we are treated racially in this country makes us feel. Our ancestors didn’t immigrate here, they were forced here against their will. Marcus Garvey tried to help us return to Africa in an honest way, not as the stooges of the US government like the negroes who agreed to resettle in Liberia as the US government’s henchmen. No the US government blocked our returning on our own terms and trumped up some IRS charge against Marcus Garvey, imprisoning him, stole the money from him that the people paid for their passage back to African, and just took his ship. Then allowed the Ku Klux Klan, racist white cops, lying white women and anybody else who wanted to brutalize us and kill us to get away with it with the blessings of the courts as cops are getting away with it to this very day. The courts are determined to uphold the Roger B. Taney ruling stating that black people have no rights that a white man is bound to respect. Slavery is over but racists are determined to make us “pay” for that ending. The US government sided with the confederate south and double crossed Black people, refusing to give us our 40 acres and a mule. We are the only people in this country who literally started life without a penny, pulling ourselves up by our own boot straps.

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