In an exclusive interview with Closer Weekly, Martin Sheen opens up about his relationship with his son, Charlie Sheen. “Charlie is my hero. With all the things he deals with, I couldn’t be more impressed. I just adore him,” the 77-year-old gushes.

Martin shares that despite Charlie’s 2015 admission of his HIV diagnosis, he is “doing very, very well” adding that his disease is “very debilitating and a heavy cross that he carries with a lot of courage.”

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“He’s carried the heaviest burdens of anyone I know and maintained humility and compassion that is inspiring,” The West Wing vet says of his 52-year-old son.

Martin also admits he has his own demons that he has yet to overcome. “We just become aware of [our demons] in a positive way where we don’t allow them to destroy us. It really takes family and friends. You have to be willing to love and allow others to love you,” he explains to Closer.

And at 77 years old, he still has a lot left on his list of things to do. “I just want to maintain my health so I can continue to experience this great blessing called life. The older I get, the more I appreciate it and the people in it,” he shares with Closer. “I love being alive, I love my life, I love being loved and I love love itself. To this day, I give thanks and praise that I’m basically the happiest guy I know.”

For more on Martin and Charlie, pick up the latest issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now — and be sure to sign up for our newsletter for exclusive news!