It has been a whirlwind past few weeks for fans of Beverly Hills 90210. In late February, it had been announced that the iconic teen drama from the 90s was coming back and almost every star had signed on to reprise their roles.
There weren't a lot of details at the time, but astute observers noticed that Luke Perry wasn't one of the stars that had signed on. He said they hadn't worked out a schedule that would also accommodate his role on Riverdale.
Perry had been one of the 90s biggest heart-throbs for his portrayal of Dylan Mackay, the bad boy loner of the 90210 crew. His trademark good looks had not diminished with age and his career had been revived with his role as Archie's dad on Riverdale.
The excitement of Beverly Hills returning was short-lived, as word broke that Perry had suffered a massive stroke. He was rushed to hospital and was responsive for a time, sadly he would succumb just days later to complications caused by the stroke.
His co-star Shannen Doherty had spoken to him just hours before he died.
"I can’t talk about it here ’cause I will literally start crying but I love him and he knows I love him," she said. "It’s Luke, and he’s my Dylan."
The world mourned with the announcement of his passing, but now his former stars are speaking out. Showing us that Perry was so much more than the character he played on TV.
“I am in shock. Heartbroken. Devastated by the loss of my friend. I have so many memories with Luke that make me smile and that are forever imprinted on my heart and mind,” Doherty told People magazine.
Doherty and Perry's characters fell in love on 90210 and the pair had undeniable chemistry. Although they drifted apart after the show went off the air, Perry reconnected after Doherty went public with her own health crisis.
“Luke was a smart, quiet, humble and complex man with a heart of gold and never-ending well of integrity and love. Luke reached out to me during my cancer journey and we picked right back up, albeit older and wiser, but that connection remained in tact,” she said.
Doherty battled breast cancer for years before announcing her remission in September.
“I will miss him everyday. Every minute. Every second.”
Perry will leave behind two children - Jack, 21, and Sophie, 18.
“Luke loved his family. He raved about his kids and how proud he was of them. He showed me videos of the often,” says Doherty. “They were his heart and for him, his biggest accomplishment.”
Tori Spelling, who was Perry's co-star on the hit show her father Aaron produced, echoed that sentiment.
“I’m saddened for his kids whom he adored beyond words. He was so proud of Jack and Sophie,” she said to People.
“Luke was one of the kindest and most humble human beings I’ve ever known. I’m so sorry for the loss that everyone is experiencing.”
Ian Ziering also starred with Perry on 90210, he took to Twitter and Instagram to mourn.
Dearest Luke,— Ian Ziering (@IanZiering) March 4, 2019
I will forever bask in the loving memories we've shared over the last thirty years. May your journey forward be enriched by the magnificent souls who have passed before you, just like you have done here, for those you leave behind.
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Dearest Luke, I will forever bask in the loving memories we've shared over the last thirty years. May your journey forward be enriched by the magnificent souls who have passed before you, just like you have done here for those you leave behind. God please give him a seat close to to you, he deserves it.
Jason Priestly played Perry's best-friend on the show, but their relationship continued off the screen for many years. His quiet tweet is shows just how differently we all experience grief.
Colin Hanks, son of Tom, met Perry only once, but he shared a story the shows Perry the human was worth being a TV crush.
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I only met him once but the story is too good not tell given todays sad events. My wife and I are on a plane back from Mexico. Couple of rows ahead of us, these two brothers, young kids, are beating the hell out of eachother. Their poor parents are powerless to stop the crying, yelling and screaming. If you're a parent you understand. Sometimes there's nothing you can do. It was like this for close to two hours. Then about 10 minutes before landing it starts to get real bad. Out of no where, a man comes from first class. Hat, beard, sunglasses, blowing up a balloon. He ties it off, hands it off like he's holding out a sword to a king. Kneeling, Head down, arms up. Kids calm down in milliseconds. Plane damn near bursts into applause. 15 minutes longer and it probably would have started WWIII, but we landed before that could happen. We get off the plane, are waiting on line in customs. Finally get a good look at the guy and I say to my wife "Holy shit. I think that balloon man/hero" is Luke Perry". As luck would have it we end up standing next to each other. Out of the blue he turns to me and says some kind words about Fargo, which kinda blew my mind. I start singing his praises about how long I've admired him and also about the move with the balloon. "That's a pro move! You can't teach that!" I say. He tells me he always flies with a couple of balloons for that very reason, to give to screaming kids. Don't know if that's true, but have no reason to believe it wasn't. Guy seemed like a true gent. Gone way too damn soon. Also, I'll be damned if I don't start traveling with some spare balloons 🎈🎈🎈 #promove #rip #lukeperry #truegent
Perry will leave a huge hole in the hearts of those who have loved him, but we know that they had something special.
RIP Luke Perry.