Kevin Hart Makes First Official Appearance at People’s Choice Awards 2019 Following Near-Fatal Accident

Kevin Hart

Christopher Polk/E! Entertainment/NBCU Photo Bank

Kevin Hart looked healthy and strong as he took the stage at this year’s People’s Choice Awards on Sunday.

The comedian — who is still recovering from a devastating car crash that left him hospitalized in September — made his first official public appearance at the star-studded show, where he took home the award for Favorite Comedy Act.

Hart was greeted with a standing ovation when he stepped out onto stage at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California, to accept the trophy, and he shared some emotional and inspirational words with his fans.

“First and foremost, I thank God, because I definitely don’t have to be here,” Hart said, somberly. “Being that I am, that makes me appreciate life even more.”

“It makes me appreciate the things that really matter. Family,” he added. “I want to thank my wife, my kids. They really stepped up to the plate for me.”

Hart also made sure to thank the public, and his fans, for their important role in making so many artists’ dreams a possibility.

“You have no idea the effect that you have on us as entertainers. Your energy, your support, it means the world and I want to thank you guys for being there for me in my difficult time,” Hart shared. “This is special.”

Hart was in the passenger seat when he was involved in a car crash in his 1970 Plymouth Barracuda at 12:45 a.m. near Calabasas, California, on Sept. 1. A source told ET that Hart fractured his spine in three places and had to undergo major surgery. He was released 10 days after the crash.

He spoke out about his injury, his recovery and what life lessons he’s learned in an emotional video he shared late last month. Check out the video below for more on his ongoing recovery.

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