In her first televised appearance since Cory Monteith’s death, Lea Michele took the stage at the Teen Choice Awards on Sunday night and dedicated her Choice TV Actress – Comedy prize to her late Glee co-star and real-life boyfriend.
“I wanted to dedicate this award to Cory,” she said while fighting back tears. “For all of you out there who loved and admired Cory as much as I did, I promise that, with your love, we’re going to get through this together.
“He was very special to me, and also to the world, and we were very lucky to witness his incredible talent, his handsome smile, and his beautiful, beautiful heart,” she continued. “So whether you knew him personally or just as Finn Hudson, Cory reached out and he became a part of all of our hearts — and that’s where he’ll stay forever, so thank you guys so much.”
See her full acceptance speech below:
Before Michele collected her prize, the whole Glee cast accepted the Choice TV Comedy award, also paying tribute to Monteith. After Michele’s emotional acceptance speech, a picture of Monteith was displayed on the screen with the text “Cory Monteith: 1982-2013.”
Glee returns to Fox on Thursday, Sept. 26, and the third episode of season 5 will address Monteith’s untimely death.