Just after he finished as runner-up on season 10 of The Masked Singer, Dukes of Hazzard star John Schneider spoke about how the show helped him after the death of his wife, Alicia Allain.
While speaking to PEOPLE about his The Masked Singer opportunity, Schneider reflected on joining the show months after Allair died from breast cancer. “What an amazing opportunity to be able to honor Alicia,” he stated about The Masked Singer. “To be able to honor people who are grieving, maybe educate people who are grieving a little bit, in front of millions of people.”
Although he describes himself as a “pretty strong guy,” John Schneider stated that he’s also a very emotional guy. “Being out there on that stage dressed like a donut, singing some of the greatest songs ever written, and having people respond to the songs and the performance with no notion that it was me, really, really helped John Schneider.”
Schneider pointed out that wearing the donut costume helped him get through the worst year of his life. “I’m delighted to have done it.”
The actor further explained that his wife had tried to convince him to do The Masked Singer for a while. “I fully expected one day for Alicia to be there to help … So when that opportunity came, I just had to kind of look toward heaven and kind of laugh.”
He then said his wife was there for him when the show asked him to be a donut. It reminded him about how Allair would go to the local donut shop every Saturday to get him a bag of apple fritters. “So again, they said, ‘Donut,’ and I just had to look up at the sky and go, ‘Well, of course. This is you. It’s got to be you.’”
John Schneider Says ‘The Masked Singer’ Is a ‘Great Opportunity to Have Fun and Also Grieve
Meanwhile, John Schneider spoke about how The Mask Singer was not only a great opportunity to have fun and to entertain, it was also a special place to grieve and let his fans know it’s okay.
“Grieving is something you’ve got to do,” Schneider explained. “And I liked that the Donut grieving actually is helping people who are on the same road. It’s not a job I ever wanted. It’s nothing I ever really wanted to understand.”
When asked how the experience helped him through his grief process, John Schneider said he was able to be in front of others and openly grieve. “What an amazing opportunity to be able to honor Alicia,” he continued. “To be able to honor people who are grieving, maybe educate people who are grieving a little bit, in front of millions of people? My god, what a platform.”