Mom’s Disease Inspired L’il Jon to Return to ‘Celebrity Apprentice’

by | January 7, 2013 at 11:44 AM | Celebrity Apprentice

Lil Jon. (Getty Images)

In person, rapper Lil Jon is more sensitive than you might think. At the Television Critics Association winter press tour, he showed up wearing sunglasses and flashing a mouth full of gold and diamonds, looking all flash and cool.

But the 41-year-old performer revealed a surprising soft side when he explained it was his mom who inspired him to compete again in the “All Star Celebrity Apprentice,” which returns March 3 with celebrities LaToya Jackson, Trace Adkins, Marilu Henner, Gary Busey, Dennis Rodman, and others playing to raise money for a charity of their choice.

“I said on the finale, I’m like, ‘Hell, no, I’m not coming back,’” he explained. “And then while I was thinking about it, my mother had a stroke, and my mother has had diabetes, like, all her life, but I thought her diabetes was in remission. … So it made me say, “You know what? Maybe I should go back to help bring awareness for friends and family of people with diabetes.”

“And then I also saw a documentary with Tribe Called Quest, and in the documentary one of the guys in the group, Phife, he has diabetes, and, you know, I’m a fan of Tribe Called Quest. I know Phife, and his struggle was he wasn’t taking care of himself while they were doing their thing in hip hop,” he said. “He lost a kidney, and his wife had to give him one of her kidneys. So those two things touched me, and it made me say, ‘You know what? I can come back and compete and help bring awareness for this disease.’”

According to Donald Trump, the new season is “going to be huge.”