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Matthew Perry Was More Than An Actor — He Changed Lives


Most of us knew Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing from the hit show “Friends.” Just like other massive fans, I felt devastated when I found out that he passed away. Perry’s “Friends” character was someone who comforted us —someone millions could relate to.

But Matthew Perry was more than just Chandler Bing. Perry famously said that he wanted people to remember him for more than just his “Friends” role. Above all else, he wanted people to remember him for helping others

In 2012, Perry took a major step to help others who struggled with addiction just like him. He turned his $10 million Malibu beach compound into Perry House, a men’s sober living facility. The following year, the White House presented Perry with an award for his Perry House project. Matthew Perry sold his addiction center two years later, but he still committed himself to providing services for people recovering from addiction.  

Many of Perry’s friends shared tributes to the late actor shortly after his passing. One of his celebrity friends, Hank Azaria, shared how Perry helped him in his early years of sobriety. And former “Friends” casting director, Leslie Litt, spoke of Perry’s powerful impact on her life. Litt’s daughter lives with a life-threatening condition, and Perry hosts an awareness fundraiser for Litt’s daughter’s medical condition every year. Leslie Litt said that after “Friends” shot its final scene, Perry told her he “will always host” the fundraiser, even though he’d no longer seen her daily.

On a personal level, Perry and “Friends” as a whole have always provided me comfort when I needed it most, especially after my brother died. My brother was a lively person, always lovely and smiling, and without his presence, my family home just felt empty. During that dark time, I often watched “Friends” because it was one of my biggest “comfort shows.” Matthew Perry was always there to cheer me up, making me laugh when I felt like there wasn’t much to laugh about. He unknowingly helped me when I needed it the most. 

Matthew Perry wasn’t perfect, but that’s what made us love him so much. He bravely shared his struggles with addiction and still lived life with the same sense of humor we saw in Chandler Bing. Perry was so much more than his role on “Friends.” He made a lasting impact on many people’s lives, including mine. Perry wanted to be remembered for how he helped others, and that’s exactly how many of us remember him.

Matthew Perry truly made the world a brighter, more hopeful place. I think all celebrities want to be remembered for that and not just the roles we know them for.

Image by Policy Exchange on Flickr



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