Jason Priestley and Luke Perry were the heartthrobs of the 1990s. Perry, who played Dylan McKay on the hugely popular "Beverly Hills 90210," was the rebellious, brooding counterpart to Priestley's all-American, morally-conscious character Brandon Walsh.
While the pair became the show's central male characters, they also became good friends in real life. It took a few days following Perry's death from a recent stroke for Priestley to collect his thoughts and convey his feelings about the loss of his friend. Perry died in hospital at age 52 on Monday.
On Thursday, the Vancouver-born actor posted to Instagram that his dear friend Perry was "one of those truly special people who really cared ... Luke was not only a star, he was an incredibly bright light that was extinguished far too soon."
Almost a day later, Priestley followed up that tribute with a message of gratitude for the love and support he has received. In another Instagram post he wrote, "Luke was much more than just a friend to me ... he was also my teammate, my teacher, my sounding board, my compass, my brother ... Luke was truly one of a kind."
Perry starred as bad boy Dylan McKay for the first six seasons of "Beverly Hills, 90210" before exiting the show in 1995. He later reprised his role for the final two seasons. Less than a week before Perry's death, FOX announcedJason Priestley, Jennie Garth, Ian Ziering, Gabrielle Carteris, Brian Austin Green and Tori Spelling were going to return for a six-episode "90210" quasi-revival.
And just days before Perry died, Priestley posted that he was "excited to be working with the good people of 90210," again.
Many of these cast members also shared their grief alongside Priestley on social media.
Tiffani Thiessen, who played Valerie Malone on the FOX series, paid tribute to her late co-star three days after his death on Instagram, posting:
"My heart has been weighing heavy. The loss of a man who started as my co-star but quickly became my friend. He welcomed me on my very first day of #90210 with open arms. A day that was not an easy one for me. I was coming in to a show, a family really, that had been together for over 4 years. But this man took me under his wing and made me feel at home. Made me feel like I belonged in his TV family."
She continued: "He was sincere, sweet, warm, kind, professional and funny as all heck. And most of all, the definition of a gentleman. Luke, our world has a hole in it now that you aren't here. But heaven definitely gained you as an angel. #RIP #LukePerry #gonetoosoon."
Ian Ziering, who starred as Steve Sanders for all 10 seasons of the series also posted a tribute on Instagram.
"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," he wrote.
Ziering continued to share touching photos and memories of him on social media in the days following Perry's death.
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Along with Perry's fellow actors, a few notable Canadians also shared their sympathies.
"Star Trek" and Canadian-born actor William Shatner conveyed his condolences via Twitter.
Gare Joyce, the author of The Code, whichwas adapted for the television series "Private Eyes," starring Jason Priestley remembered Perry on Twitter.
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