“This day means more to me than you can possibly imagine,” Applegate said during her speech. “I don’t say that I have friends — I have family. These people take care of me. They take care of me every day of my life, and without them I don’t know what I would do.”
The actor also thanked her “gorgeous” fans in attendance. “Every single one of you,” she said. “I love you guys so much.”
Her “Married… With Children” co-stars Katey Sagal and David Faustino, as well as her “Dead to Me” co-star Linda Cardellini and creator Liz Feldman, gave speeches before her. With a quavering voice, Sagal assured Applegate: “You are not alone. We’re all here.”
Applegate tweeted in October that “walking sticks are now part of my new normal” and shared photos of various canes she had purchased, writing: “Stay tuned to see which make the cut.” She was just as cheeky at the podium, but teared up while thanking her daughter.
“The most important person in this world is my daughter,” Applegate said. “You are so much more than even you know. You are so beautiful and kind and smart and interesting. I’m blessed every day that I get to wake up and take you to school. … Thank you for standing by me through all of this.”
The actor, who was barefoot during the ceremony, later tweeted that shoes can cause pain or imbalance to many who are dealing with MS. Applegate was reportedly set to be honored in 2020 until the pandemic hit, only to be diagnosed in April 2021. She insisted on filming the third “Dead to Me” season, nonetheless.
“I got diagnosed while we were working,” Applegate told Variety last week. “I had to call everybody and be like, ‘I have multiple sclerosis, guys.’ Like, what the fuck! And then it was all about kind of learning — all of us learning — what I was going to be capable of doing.”
Applegate, who was helped onstage by Sagal, joked it was “so Katey to steal the thunder.” She kept riffing and said, “Oh, by the way, I have a disease. Did you not notice? I’m not even wearing shoes.”