By Annie Barrett
October 08, 2013 at 12:00 PM EDT
Valerie Harper
Credit: ABC

The Dancing With the Stars cast had nothing but praise for Valerie Harper, 74, who was eliminated on Week 4 along with her professional partner Tristan MacManus.

“I hope to God I can be half the inspiration she is,” said comedian Bill Engvall. “I kinda wish they’d have just given her the trophy and said ‘Look, here’s the deal.'”

The Rhoda actress, who is battling brain cancer, spent her time on DWTS deflecting special treatment at all costs, bringing everyone to tears through (or “true,” as Tristan would say) her bravery, and hilariously begging for horse tranquilizers for her aching knees so she could keep on dancing — but she couldn’t quite keep the beat or remember her steps this week or last.

See the cast discuss Harper, and hear from the hero herself, in’s post-show video:

“I just feel I’m a human being that’s very lucky to be with these people,” said Harper, once again redirecting the focus away from herself. “The stature of them as giving, funny, supportive, light, intense, committed to doing a good job, all those great qualities — it’s so palpable in these kids. I just love ’em all.

For more Dancing With the Stars, read’s full episode recap.

Reporting by Michael Fleeman.

Episode Recaps


Dancing With the Stars

  • TV Show
  • 28
  • ABC