She’s staying strong. Christina Applegate made her first public appearance since announcing her multiple sclerosis diagnosis to accept her star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
The star, 50, attended the ceremony in Los Angeles on Monday, November 14. Former Married… With Children costars Katey Sagal and David Faustino were guest speakers, praising the actress before Dead to Me creator Liz Feldman and star Linda Cardellini honored their colleague.
Sagal, 68, highlighted Applegate’s strength. “You bend but don’t break. Your humility and irreverence allows all of us to bend with you,” the Sons of Anarchy alum said.
Feldman, 45, called her a “lioness” on set, looking out for her colleagues all the time. Cardellini, 47, explained that she signed on to star in their hit Netflix show because Applegate was attached.
“What I didn’t realize then was I was about to make a friend for life. Christina is a beautiful person, inside and out,” she gushed, recalling how the California native has supported her through tough times. The ER alum called Applegate “a fiercely loyal, honest and generous friend” who will “alway make you laugh.”
The City of Los Angeles presented Applegate with a plaque of recognition, and it was declared Christina Applegate Day in Hollywood.
Applegate, who was barefoot, was assisted to the podium by Sagal and a cane. “It’s so Katey to, like, steal the thunder,” the honoree quipped as she assured the audience that she needed her friend by her side.
“I can’t stand for too long, so I’m gonna thank the people that I really need to thank,” she said before acknowledging her family and her agent.
She praised daughter Sadie, 11, who she shares with husband Martyn LeNoble. “The most important person in this world is my daughter. You are so much more than even you know … I am blessed every day [with you],” the guest of honor enthused.
Applegate realized she didn’t speak out about her MS diagnosis, and made a quick quip as she ended her speech. “Oh by the way, I have a disease. Did you not notice? I’m not even wearing shoes. You’re supposed to laugh at that,” she said.
BFF Selma Blair and mom Nancy Priddy were among the attendees at the Walk of Fame ceremony.
Applegate previously hinted via social media on October 27 that she had a special event coming up.
“I have a very important ceremony coming,” Applegate tweeted alongside a photo of four walking sticks. “This will be my first time out since diagnosed with MS. Walking sticks are now part of my new normal. Thank you @neowalksticks for these beauties. Stay tuned to see which ones make the cut for a week of stuff.”
“Hi friends. A few months ago I was diagnosed with MS,” Applegate wrote via Twitter at the time. “It’s been a strange journey. But I have been so supported by people that I know who also have this condition. It’s been a tough road. But as we all know, the road keeps going. Unless some a-hole blocks it.”
The actress added: “As one of my friends that has MS said ‘We wake up and take the indicated action.’ And that’s what I do. So now I ask for privacy. As I go through this thing. Thank you xo.”
Applegate has been very open about her various health struggles in the past, including her battle with breast cancer in 2008. She went through with a double mastectomy at age 36 after testing positive for the BRCA gene and had preventive surgery to remove her ovaries and fallopian tubes in 2017.
“If you’re BRCA positive, it’s highly possible you’ll develop cancer in your lifetime,” the Emmy winner explained on the Today show at the time. “The first thing is to be really diligent about what you’re putting into your body, as far as what kind of food you’re eating … the other big killer is stress. That’s a hard thing to say to people especially right now. We’re living in a bizarre time … Breathe deeper. That’s a big one for me. I used to be a stressed out person. I’m not anymore. I try to find the lining in everything in life.”
The Bad Moms star has also been very involved with charity work after her breast cancer diagnosis, even launching her own foundation Right Action in October 2009.
“It will provide financial aid for women of high risk who want to get MRIs. If you don’t have insurance – which millions of Americans don’t – it’s $5,000, so women are opting not to have this test,” Applegate told Us Weekly at the time. “That’s what saved my life, and I want to give it back in that respect.”
Along with the Samantha Who? alum, Jack Osbourne, Jamie-Lynn Sigler and Selma Blair have been outspoken about their experiences with MS. When Applegate revealed her diagnosis last year, Blair, 50, sent her support.
“Loving you always. Always here,” the Brown’s Requiem star tweeted at the time. “As are our kids. Beating us up with love.”