Actor Matthew Perry, best known for portraying Chandler Bing in the popular sitcom “Friends” on NBC, passed away. He was 54.
Perry was found dead in his Los Angeles home’s hot tub on Saturday, according to law enforcement officials who spoke with the Los Angeles Times. He was found unresponsive by the authorities at 4 p.m., and there were no indications of drug use or foul play.
The actor’s family tells PEOPLE in an exclusive statement that they are “heartbroken” by his “tragic” death, which occurred on Saturday when he seemed to drown at the age of 54.
“We are heartbroken by the tragic loss of our beloved son and brother,” the family says. “Matthew brought so much joy to the world, both as an actor and a friend.”
They add: “You all meant so much to him and we appreciate the tremendous outpouring of love.”
Later on Saturday, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Department informed PEOPLE that, while the identity of the deceased was not known, officers responded to a report at Matthew’s house regarding the death of a gentleman in his 50s.
Friends’ production company, Warner Bros. TV, released the following statement regarding the beloved actor after he passed away: “We are devastated by the passing of our dear friend Matthew Perry. Matthew was an incredibly gifted actor and an indelible part of the Warner Bros. Television Group family. The impact of his comedic genius was felt around the world, and his legacy will live on in the hearts of so many. This is a heartbreaking day, and we send our love to his family, his loved ones, and all of his devoted fans.”
Father John Bennett Perry, mother Suzanne Morrison, and stepfather Keith Morrison, a journalist for Dateline, raised Matthew.
Matthew was born in 1969 to John and Suzanne, but the couple divorced in less than a year. (Both John and Suzanne remarried and welcomed more children with their respective partners: Suzanne wed Keith in 1981, while John married wife Debbie the same year.)
Having grown up in Ottawa, Canada, with his mother, Matthew (who has five siblings from his parents’ previous marriages) moved to California as a teenager to live with his father. He continued his father’s acting career, and the two frequently appeared together on TV, most notably when the elder Perry made an appearance on Matthew Perry’s popular television show Friends in 1998.
Throughout his long struggle with addiction, Matthew’s parents were at his side as well. They rushed to the hospital to be with their son after he was admitted in 2018 following a colon burst brought on by years of opioid usage. “They were both standing at the edge of my bed,” Matthew recalled to Diane Sawyer on ABC News in October 2022. “I was like, ‘Whoa, I must be really sick for this to be happening.’ ”