WLOX's Jeff Lawson thanks viewers for their 'thoughts, concerns and prayers'

Many WLOX viewers have been asking for an update on our veteran news anchor Jeff Lawson, who was recently diagnosed with Bell's Palsy. He's been taking some time off, but stays in touch with the newsroom and many of you. He wanted us to share this letter with all of you who have so kindly expressed your thoughts and concerns.

I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone for their thoughts, concerns and prayers regarding my medical issues.

As you may be aware, I was diagnosed with Bell's Palsy a few months ago. It is a very common medical condition that results in a partial paralysis of the face.

My case is not as severe as some, however when you make your living on television, the Bell's Palsy can be a major hindrance to doing your job.

I have consulted with various medical professionals and have undergone several tests and treatments. So far, the progress has been slow, but I remain cautiously optimistic it will eventually improve.

This is why I have been off the air recently. My employer supports that decision wholeheartedly, and for that, I am immensely grateful and appreciative. I also want to thank my hard working colleagues who have done such a great job filling in for me during my absence.

First and foremost, I want to personally thank the many folks who have spoken to me, or reached out via e mail to offer their support, suggestions and prayers. No words can express how much that means to me.

I constantly remind myself that although this condition can be quite aggravating, it is not life threatening. It also serves as a reminder of how much I admire and respect those who daily deal with more serious and life threatening illnesses, and do it with such courage and faith.

As for me, thank you so much for your thoughts and prayers. I hope to be back "on air" as soon as my medical condition improves.