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Friends star Matthew Perry's dying wish will be honored with new Foundation

Matthew starred as Chandler Bing in Friends. He passed away on Saturday October 28 at the age of 54


Matthew Perry at the 2022 GQ Men Of The Year Party
Rebecca Lewis
Rebecca Lewis - Los Angeles
Los Angeles correspondentLos Angeles
3 November 2023
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A foundation has been opened in Matthew Perry's name, a week after his tragic death at the age of 54. 

“In the spirit of Matthew Perry’s enduring commitment to helping others struggling with the disease of addiction, we embark on a journey to honor his legacy by establishing the Matthew Perry Foundation, guided by his own words and experiences, and driven by his passion for making a difference in as many lives as possible,” the foundation’s inaugural statement reads. 

The foundation has been sponsored and will be run by the National Philanthropic Trust, and they are currently accepting donations to help individuals dealing with addiction. The National Philanthropic Trust is a "public charity dedicated to providing philanthropic expertise to donors, foundations and financial institutions, enabling them to realize their philanthropic aspirations". 

Actor Matthew Perry rides the High Roller at The LINQ Promenade on June 11, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.© Denise Truscello
Matthew's name will be remembered with a new foundation

Matthew was well known for his work on the NBC comedy Friends, but in 2022 he admitted that when he died, he didn't want his work as an actor to be the first thing mentioned, but instead that he had tried to help other people. 

After battling addiction for years, he turned his Malibu residence into a sober living facility called the Perry House, which closed in 2015. 

"When I die, I don’t want ‘Friends’ to be the first thing that’s mentioned — I want helping others to be the first thing that’s mentioned,” he told Tom Power in 2022, during an appearance on the Q With Tom Power podcast. 

"I’m going to live the rest of my life proving that. Addiction is far too powerful for anyone to defeat alone. But together, one day at a time, we can beat it down." 

Matthew Perry© Frederick M. Brown
Matthew died at the age of 54

Th actor battled with devastating addictions to alcohol and drugs, and for decades he was on and off the wagon with his addiction to alcohol and pills; the actor revealed that at one point he was down to 128 pounds and taking 55 Vicodin a day.

"I didn't know how to stop," he said in 2022. "If the police came over to my house and said, 'If you drink tonight, we're going to take you to jail,' I'd start packing. I couldn't stop because the disease and the addiction is progressive. So it gets worse and worse as you grow older."

Matthew Perry and John Stamos in The One with the Donor© Sky
Matthew was known for his work on Friends

A year ago he released his memoir, Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing, in which he revealed he had almost died at the age of 49 when his colon burst from opioid overuse, leaving him spending weeks fighting for his life. What followed was five months in hospital and nine with a colostomy bag. 

Matthew admitted: "The doctors told my family that I had a 2 percent chance to live. I was put on a thing called an ECMO machine, which does all the breathing for your heart and your lungs. And that's called a Hail Mary. No one survives that." 

Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Courteney Cox as Monica Geller, Matt Le Blanc as Joey Tribbiani, Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay© NBC
Matthew (far left) as Chandler Bing, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Courteney Cox as Monica Geller, Matt Le Blanc as Joey Tribbiani, Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay

After his death, Friends stars Jennifer Aniston, Lisa Kudrow, Courteney Cox, David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc released a heartbreaking joint statement.

"We are all so utterly devastated by the loss of Matthew. We were more than just cast mates. We are a family," their statement reads. "There is so much to say, but right now we’re going to take a moment to grieve and process this unfathomable loss. In time we will say more, as and when we are able. 

"For now, our thoughts and our love are with Matty’s family, his friends, and everyone who loved him around the world." 

"We are heartbroken by the tragic loss of our beloved son and brother," his family – mom Suzanne Perry, father John Bennett Perry, and his five half-siblings – said.

"Matthew brought so much joy to the world, both as an actor and a friend. You all meant so much to him and we appreciate the tremendous outpouring of love."

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