He did improve along the way, just not fast enough to stay in the game.
"Did I want to go on? No question. I'm a fighter. But you know what? It was a great moment for me," he said.
Leonard and partner Anna Trebunskaya were given 21 points out of 30 for their Viennese Waltz on Monday's episode, but they didn't garner enough viewer votes to stay in the competition.
"He never danced before, was trained to do something completely different, and came out there every single right with grace and enthusiasm and showmanship," said Leonard's dance partner, Anna Trebunskaya. "I think some of the other people on the show need to learn from this guy and then they'll do fine."
Leonard is active with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He says his life is now about being of service, offering people help, hope and inspiration.
"Doing this show has given me a little bit more celebrity to raise awareness and raise funds," Leonard said.
Chelsea Kane was relieved after being informed that being "in jeopardy" with two other couples was just a dramatic device for television.
The dancing stakes are raised as the remaining eight teams prepare for all-American week.
"We're going to be doing an all-American Samba," said professional dancer Karina Smirnoff.
"Which there is no such thing, but we are creating that" added her partner, Ralph Macchio. "It is a Brazilian dance that's all-American."
Kirstie Alley will dance a Foxtrot next week with what she calls a "kinky twist."
"I want to thank everybody who voted for us, honestly, because it's like being married to someone through richer or poorer, better or worse, and I'm going to try to be richer and better," Alley said.
Cheryl Burke rested Tuesday after feeling something in her thigh region rip during Monday night's Paso Doble.
"I will survive and I am not going to bow out of the competition," she said.
Tuesday's episode also included a performance by Jennifer Hudson singing songs from her latest album, "I Remember Me."