Fans were sad to see Mr. T get eliminated from Dancing With the Stars this week, especially after his touching Most Memorable Year performance tributing his past cancer battle.
After the emotional waltz with his pro partner, Kym Johnson, viewers were curious what kind of cancer the former professional wrestler once had. From 1995 until 2001, Mr. T battled T-cell lymphoma, a fight he ended up winning.
Mr. T has always been a fighter. "I survived the ghetto and the haters," the Chicago native told Closer Weekly in an exclusive interview. "I was born and raised in the ghetto, but the ghetto was not born and raised in me. I’ve got a loving mother."
"I’m a good old-fashioned, butt-kicking, God-fearing mama’s boy," he added. "My mother told me the biggest room is the room for improvement. That’s why if people say I did good today, that’s fine, but I’ll go home and wash all the adulation off me. Tomorrow is another day."
He reflected on his past battle with a moving performance of the song "Amazing Grace" during the show's episode on Monday, April 10. "Every time I hear that song, it would send chills to my body," he said in the opening credits. "I want to honor God through this dance that I do because the grace of God saved me and that’s why I feel I’m here."
The 64-year-old has opened up in the past about how he competed on DWTS to raise money for St. Jude Children's research hospital. "If I can give one kid at the hospital the strength not to quit — man, that’s what I try to do: Use myself as a shining light," he told Closer.
After he touched the hearts of the judges, the audience, and the TV viewers, Mr. T was sadly voted off the dancing competition during week four.
"Thank you. I said I couldn't dance but I'd try. It was a great experience, I enjoyed myself. Thank you," he said before exiting the stage.
Kym added, "Every single day has been amazing with Mr. T. I just adore him. I’m going to miss dancing with him every day, but I had so much fun and I’ve got a new friend for life now." So sweet!
For the full interview with Mr. T, pick up the new issue of Closer Weekly on stands now!
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