'Miracles From Heaven' Star Martin Henderson Credits a Miracle for His Sobriety

By May Wilkerson 03/18/16

The former Grey's Anatomy star cites a real-life angel as the reason he embraced his journey into sobriety. 

'Miracles From Heaven' Actor Says A 'Miracle' Helped Him Get Sober
Martin Henderson Photo via Shutterstock/Feature Flash Agency

Actor Martin Henderson, who stars in the movie Miracles From Heaven, experienced his own miracle when he quit drinking over a decade ago. "There's been a few key periods in my life where I had to take a leap of faith and one of the biggest was for me when I was 27-years-old and I had had a history of alcohol abuse and I decided to get sober," the former Grey's Anatomy star revealed this week on the talk show Home & Family.

The actor describes his incidental encounter with a stranger at an art gallery in New Zealand on his 27th birthday. They were the only two on a gallery tour and he found himself breaking down and opening up to her: “I just blurted out, I said 'I've got to share something with you, I'm really terrified. I just gave up drinking and I don’t know what to do and I'm scared and I've got all this shame about how I've been living.’ I was really quite a mess.”

Despite having just met him, the “teeny little Scottish woman” was receptive to his cry for help. “She just stood there and listened intently to everything I had to say and there was something so warm about the way she was receiving my story that I just kept unloading more and more," says Henderson, now 41.

It turns out, the woman knew exactly how to help him. She revealed that she ran a rehab for alcoholics and had spent "the last 35 years helping alcoholics and drug addicts." She went on to give Henderson “the most incredibly inspired supportive talk" he recalls, in which she "talked about how in life, we all have a path, but at any one time we walk off the path and we can meander around but the path doesn’t go away." 

It was exactly what the actor needed to get his life on track. He made the decision to get sober not long after, and went on to have a successful career in TV and movies. "I felt like I'd lost myself and she was just reminding that all you gotta do is step back on that [path]," he says. "She was definitely an angel. And I think about her from time to time." 

Check out the interview from Home & Family below. Henderson tells his story at the 3 min 20 sec mark: 

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May Wilkerson is a writer, comic and Managing Editor @someecards. Co-host of the podcast Crazy; In Bed w/alyssalimp. She is also the top Google result for "insufferable lunatic." Follow this insufferable lunatic on Twitter.