NEW YORK – AWOL funnyman Dave Chappelle (search) has rekindled his American spirit.
The Comedy Central (search) mystery man, who ran away to South Africa late last month, was sighted last week in his hometown of Yellow Springs, Ohio, where he reportedly bought a pack of American Spirit cigarettes at a local convenience store, according to the Dayton (Ohio) Daily News.
But he has yet to rekindle his relationship with Comedy Central, according to a network spokesman.
Comedy Central was left in the lurch when Chappelle suddenly split, causing production on "Chappelle's Show (search)" to come to a halt and throwing the future of the high-rated show into jeopardy.
Nor could the spokesman confirm that Chappelle was back in the U.S.A.
But a manager of the convenience store, the Import House, told the Dayton Daily News Chappelle walked into the store last Wednesday.
And an employee of a local bar, Ye Old Trail Tavern, said Chappelle was also sighted strolling down the town's main throroughfare last Thursday.
Chappelle spent part of his childhood in tiny Yellow Springs, where his late father was a professor at Antioch College. Today, Chappelle owns a farm there, where he lives with his wife and two children.
As the only celebrity in Yellow Springs, Chappelle is easily recognized by the town's residents. Located about 20 miles east of Dayton, Yellow Springs has a population of 3,761.