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Matthew Perry's stepdad says the actor was happy before his death, and it's unfair that he 'didn't get to have his third act'

Matthew Perry
The "Friends" star Matthew Perry died in October.Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for GQ
  • Matthew Perry's stepfather, Keith Morrison, spoke about the star's death in a new interview.

  • Morrison said Perry was happy before his death and "hadn't said that for a long time."

  • "It's a source of comfort, but also, he didn't get to have his third act, and that's not fair."

"Dateline" correspondent Keith Morrison is still feeling the ripple effects of his stepson Matthew Perry's death five months later.

"It's as other people have told me hundreds of times. It doesn't go away yet," Morrison said during a new episode of the podcast "Making Space With Hoda Kotb," released on Tuesday. "It's with you every day. It's with you all the time."

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Morrison has been married to the "Friends" star's mom, Suzanne Perry, since 1981. Perry, who's best known for playing the sarcastic Chandler Bing on the NBC sitcom "Friends," was found dead in a hot tub in his Los Angeles home in October. He was 54. The cause of death was "acute effects of ketamine" and drowning, the toxicology report says.

chandler friends
Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing in the final episode of "Friends."NBC

Perry opened up about his yearslong struggles with alcoholism and drug addiction in his 2022 memoir "Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing." The book's bombshells included Perry revealing that season nine of "Friends" was the only time he was sober on the show, and that he "spent upward of $7 million trying to get sober."

"I've been to rehab 15 times," he wrote in the memoir. "I've been in a mental institution, gone to therapy twice a week for 30 years, been to death's door."

Morrison told Kotb that Perry's unexpected death has been particularly difficult on his mother.

"There's some new aspect of it that assaults your brain, and it's not easy, especially for his mom," he said. "I don't think I'm giving away too much if I say that toward the end of his life, they were closer than I had seen them for decades, and texting each other constantly and him sharing things with her that most middle-aged men don't share with their mothers."

Morrison said that Perry was happy prior to his death.

"He said so, and he hadn't said that for a long time," Morrison told Kotb. "It's a source of comfort, but also, he didn't get to have his third act, and that's not fair. And as he said himself, 'If I suddenly died, people would be shocked, but not too many people would be surprised.' And he was right."

Matthew Perry sitting on a fountain
Matthew Perry.Reisig & Taylor/NBCU/Getty

Morrison described Perry as "a larger-than-life person" with a "fiery" personality that came out particularly when he played tennis and hockey in his younger years.

"I never tried to replace his dad, but I was there for him and he knew it," Morrison said, referring to Perry's father, John Bennett Perry. "We were close."

Even though his stepson isn't alive anymore, Morrison said that his presence is undeniable.

"Yes, that's gone, but you still feel the echo of it everywhere around here," he said.

Read the original article on Business Insider