For some celebrities, death hoaxes are no laughing matter. "Saved By the Bell" star Dennis Haskins was recently the victim of such rumors, and is speaking out against them.
The star, who played Bayside High principal Mr. Belding, recently stopped by HuffPost Live and expressed his hurt feelings over the hoax, and explained how he first found out about it.
"I was aware of it Sunday night, a friend of mine called me crying," Haskins, 63, said. "She said, 'I just wanted to hear your voice.' I said, 'Why? Are you okay?' She goes, 'You're not dead!' And I'm like, 'No!' I didn't know about it."
His trouble didn't stop there, however, as the calls continued to come.
"The next day, a script supervisor from the show called me and said, 'Denny, I was just making plans to go to Tennessee and go to your funeral!'" the actor explained. "I'm like, 'Holy cow!' So she sent me the link, I saw what was going on… they made it look legit. The story was written really well, it was really laid out, I'm not complimenting this person, but it was like a police report. 'Traveling at a certain rate of speed… crossed over a line… no alcohol or drugs in his system…' The things all tied in and it could've made sense."
Haskins took to Twitter after the false word spread, shooting down the rumor and responding to fans who expressed concern for his well-being.
"The thing that kills me is that a lot of people that care about me, that are not just friends and family members, but fans, really think I died," he lamented. "It was mean. It's not satire, satire is humor."
While the "mean" stunt took a toll on Haskins and those close to him, he added that there was a silver lining to the whole ordeal.
"I have chills all over me, because, that's the byproduct of this for me, is I've seen so much love and affection and response and people caring…" he said. "This is people really caring."