There was laughter and a few tears the other night at the first annual Tex-Mex Fiesta benefiting Stand Up To Cancer presented by the Farrah Fawcett Foundation. Fawcett’s longtime friend (and cancer survivor) Jacyln Smith accepted a Shining Star Angel Award and said, “Once in a quiet moment, Farrah said, ‘I never thought [cancer] would happen to me.’” Smith then choked up. “But she would say right now, ‘Jackie get a grip!’” After composing herself, Smith continued. “But when this did happen to her, she used her whole being to teach, uplift, and set an example for those who never thought it would happen to them.” Other honorees who hit the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts stage included Renata Helfman of Lipstick Angels and Daniel J. O’Connor, who is the CEO of the company behind the cancer immunotherapy drug Advaxis.
Fawcett lost her battle with anal cancer in 2009 but not before filming her courageous struggle in the documentary Farrah’s Story. Fawcett died a few weeks after the documentary aired on NBC. This first fund-raiser for the foundation was emceed by Billy Bush (who was way funnier than he is on Access Hollywood) and Lyle Lovett (who worked with Fawcett on the Robert Altman film Dr. T and the Women) played a long set on a hot night. The caterer? El Cholo Restaurant who served heaping helpings of tamales and enchiladas.
Fawcett’s longtime companion Ryan O’Neal attended the event. The actor is set to star alongside his old Love Story co-star Ally MacGraw at The Wallis on October 13—25.