Just days after Jamie-Lynn Sigler confessed she's been suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS) for the past 15 years, The Sopranos actress revealed her late costar James Gandolfini was extremely protective of her when she confined in him about her diagnosis.

Though Jamie-Lynn, 34, kept her health issues private for many years, she eventually opened up to some of her fellow cast members on the hit HBO series. "They were very much like family to me," she told People. "You can only handle so much by yourself. So the people I felt safest with, I confided in."

james gandolfini and jamie-lynn sigler

James and Jamie-Lynn in 2000.

"[James] was very aware and protective in general, but especially after I told him," she said of the actor, who sadly died of a heart attack at age 51 in 2013. "He was really awesome about it."

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The support from her onscreen father went a long way. "Sometimes it makes you feel better to know that somebody else knows," she continued. "And if you are having a hard day, if you're a little tired, even a pat on the back can make all the difference."

Click through our gallery below to see the cast of The Sopranos then and now!