Bret Michaels battles illness to win for Celebrity Apprentice

(NBC) - They are the words rock star Bret Michaels got to hear Donald Trump say in person: "You're hired."

Michaels fought to travel across country to compete in the celebrity apprentice finale, despite doctors' orders after suffering a warning stroke last week and surviving a brain hemorrhage earlier in the month. When he appeared on stage, he walked with a slight limp.

"I gotta tell you, it's knocked me down," said Michaels. "But I made it up in my mind, if I could, they gave me injections to take on the flight and I took 'em. I'm used to injections, so I took the shots I had to take, the blood thinners, to get here."

The "Poison" frontman and reality star edged out fellow finalist, actress Holly Robinson Peete, but both had become friends, and shared an emotional moment sharing the stage.

Trump announced both finalists would receive $250,000 for their charities, but in the end Trump says Michaels bravery sealed the deal.

"I think I had a certain amount of pressure maybe to make that choice," said Trump. "I hope I didn't do it for that reason. Holly was fantastic and Bret, you know, was just amazing."

Michaels, a life-long diabetic, earned money for the American Diabetes Association. The rocker dad also discovered during the competition his daughter was diagnosed with borderline diabetes.

"I want to see this disease gone," said Michaels.

The final challenge involved creating a new drink for Snapple, but the final weeks revolved around the health of Michaels and whether he would be able to finish the season.

"I came here to win," said Michaels. "I wanted to win."

And now that he has won, Michaels says his focus now will be family and his health.

"Because I want to go back on the road," he said. "I want to rock again."

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