Luke Perry, who played the part of Fred Andrews (Archie Andrews’ dad) on the popular teen drama TV series Riverdale, has tragically passed away (at the age of 52) on Monday, March 4, 2019. Luke became really famous in the ’90s after he played the role of Dylan McKay on the iconic 1990’s TV show “Beverly Hills 90210”. He was hospitalized on Thursday, February 28, 2019, after suffering a major stroke and according to his representative “was under close observation at the hospital”.
The news of Luke Perry being hospitalized broke out just one day after Fox News announced a “90210” reboot, featuring the original stars of the show with the exception of Luke Perry and Shannen Doherty. His publicist Arnold Robinson informed CNN, “He was surrounded by his children Jack and Sophie, his fiancé Wendy Madison Bauer, ex-wife Minnie Sharp, mother Ann Bennett, step-father Steve Bennett, brother Tom Perry, sister Amy Coder, and other close family and friends. The family appreciates the outpouring of support and prayers that have been extended to Luke from around the world and respectfully request privacy in this time of great mourning. No further details will be released at this time,” The TV series Riverdale halted production on Monday, to honour Luke’s untimely demise. On the Wednesday following his death, March 6, 2019, Entertainment Tonight reported that the CW series included an in-memoriam message before airing the show’s final credits that read: “In Memoriam Luke Perry 1966 – 2019.” The show will continue to air the episodes he has already filmed but it is uncertain how the Riverdale producers plan on integrating his death in the following episodes and what they would do with his character, Fred Andrews.
The Riverdale cast took it to social media to express their love for Luke and offered their condolences to his family. Lili Reinhart, who plays Betty Cooper on Riverdale, shared a beautiful poem in the wake of the news of Luke Perry passing. She later shared a tweet on Twitter expressing her disbelief. “I’m finding it hard to grasp that he will no longer be around to give long hugs and share his wisdom and kindness with all of us. I’m thinking of his family. His children. I pray for them to heal and find peace in this devastating loss.” Her co-stars including Cole Sprouse (Jughead), Camila Mendes (Veronica), KJ Apa (Archie Andrews) all shared happy memories of Luke in their Instagram posts. Cole appeared on “The Late Late Show with James Corden” and according to reports from The Hollywood Reporter and Entertainment Tonight, he said the cast of Riverdale is “recovering” and “going through the paces”. “Luke was one of those guys that would much rather have us laughing and telling stories about his life than lamenting it,” Sprouse reportedly said. “He was a good man. He was one of the guys that you never heard a bad word said about him.” Cole Sprouse said he wanted to keep his comments brief “out of respect for the privacy of [Perry’s] family.”