The actor known as McDreamy has at last earned recognition for his natural charm and good looks.

The star, Patrick Dempsey, was honored with the title of People's Sexiest Man Alive, a commendation that follows his appearance on 10 prior covers of the celebrated magazine, though never before in the leading spot.

"It's been a case of always the bridesmaid," remarked the one-time "Grey's Anatomy" lead in an exclusive interview with People. "This time, I'm in the spotlight, not relegated to the margins."

"I’m glad it’s happening at this point in my life," he said to the magazine. "It’s nice to have the recognition, it's fun. If you can use this for something positive, it's good. And certainly my ego takes a nice little bump."

Dempsey holds a deep commitment to the Dempsey Center, an organization he established to honor his mother's memory. Situated in Maine, the center offers individualized and all-encompassing care for cancer patients, free of charge.

Chatting with Jimmy Kimmel on his show, Dempsey humorously remarked that the choice to bestow upon him the title was "finally" settled. "We've been close a few times," he quipped, following the unveiling of the cover.

"Never give up on a dream," he playfully suggested, sharing that he engaged in fasting and frequented the gym in the month leading up to the photoshoot.

"It's important to savor the moment when it's yours. The year flies by," he observed. Chris Evans, last year's titleholder, hadn't reached out to him yet, but Dempsey was optimistic about hearing from the "Avengers" lead soon.

Dempsey expressed his surprise at receiving the prestigious accolade, sharing, "I was completely shocked, and then I laughed and was like, ‘You’re kidding me? This is a joke, right?' I was en route from New York to Maine, just as the plane began to taxi early in the morning – and that's when my phone call came through. I just started laughing because it seemed too amusing."

With his spouse, Jillian Dempsey, and their three children, Dempsey recounted to Kimmel that his family's reaction was much the same. "They laughed – quite hard. They were asking, ‘No seriously, who is it?’ And I had to insist, ‘No, it’s me.'"

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