'Alaskan Bush People' Star Bear Brown Clarifies News He's Leaving Series

Bear Brown had Alaskan Bush People fans worried when he suddenly announced Thursday that due to things he couldn't disclose publicly, he was leaving the Discovery show behind. Of course, the announcement came on April Fools' Day, but the reality personality's seemingly heartfelt statement shared to his private Instagram got quite a few of his followers.

"Due to recent events and things I can’t discuss on social media, it’s with a heavy heart, I’ve decided to no longer continue filming for Alaskan Bush People! It’s been a wild ride! God bless everyone!" he captioned a photo of himself Thursday. People who follow Brown were concerned but recognized he was likely pulling a fast one on his followers. "I’m really hoping this is an April fools joke!!" one person commented, as another added, "April Fools, please be an April Fools!!!" A third reassured themselves, "Maybe it’s an April fools day joke."

It turns out everyone who guessed they were being had was correct, as Brown posted a prank reveal later that day. "Gotcha!!!! That was an April Fools' joke in bad taste!!! My apologies!" he wrote under another photo of himself. "I’m definitely not leaving the show I plan on filming until I’m an old man!!! It’s been rough for sure! But the show is one thing in my life that is definitely good! I was gonna wait until tomorrow to say anything, but it got too much attention!!! Happy April fools day!!!"

It has been a difficult couple of months for Bear, whose father, Billy Brown, died suddenly at the age of 68 at the beginning of February. It was Bear who announced the news publicly, writing on social media at the time, "We are heartbroken to announce that our beloved patriarch Billy Brown passed away last night after suffering from a seizure."

"He was our best friend — a wonderful and loving dad, granddad and husband and he will be dearly missed," Bear continued. "He lived his life on his terms, off the grid and off the land and taught us to live like that as well. We plan to honor his legacy going forward, and to continue with his dream." During such a "painful time," he asked that people give his family privacy and prayers. In the days that followed, the Browns have gotten a ton of support, which he acknowledged in a Thursday Instagram post. "I would like to say thank you! To all my friends that have stuck with my and supported me in this hard time! To my family and my co-workers! To the love of my life! And to all my fans! God bless y’all!" he wrote, in part. "I honestly don’t know what I’d do without y’all!"