One of the last people to speak with Matthew Perry before his untimely death is opening up about their time together and the words of advice she got from him.
Model and actress Athena Crosby was photographed dining with Friends alum last Friday before he was found dead at his Los Angeles home over the weekend.
Crobsy, 25, reveals to PEOPLE that the duo met through mutual friends; she invited him to lunch at the Bel Air Hotel, thinking it would be a quiet place where she could pick his brain about his experiences in the industry.
“He just wanted to meet creative people who would obviously support him in his goals,” the pageant star says of Perry. “Honestly, I just think he was just nice and generous to meet with me.”
“Obviously, if he’s a big celebrity, he doesn’t have to meet anyone, but he agreed and he was so nice, and I was just getting to know him better and seeing if there were things we had in common and things that maybe we could do together in the future “, she adds.
Matthew Perry (left) and Athena Crosby.
Santiago Felipe/Getty; Paul Archuleta/Getty
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Over a joint order of a regular cheeseburger and extra crispy fries, the two bonded over their love of acting. Crosby recalls his warm demeanor and describes him as an expert at “conversation.”
“It was a great opportunity for me to meet such a legendary person,” she said of their nearly two-hour lunch. “I definitely felt like I’d known him forever.”
She continues: “He told me that it’s a tough process to be in this industry – as I definitely believed his words in the last few days – but that if you really know yourself and want to succeed, no one can stop you.”
“I think it’s something he felt in his own life,” notes the entertainment reporter, explaining that Perry’s “struggles, trials and tribulations” pushed him to become “his own biggest cheerleader.”
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“He was just very kind and said, ‘Don’t let anyone derail you, destroy your dreams, because if you really want it, you can make it happen,’” she recalls.
He even presented Crosby with a signed copy of his memoirs, Friends, lovers and the big scary thing. “He wrote a little note and it was very nice,” she says of the actor’s gesture.
As one of the last people Perry was seen with before his tragic death, Crosby says he felt the need to “bear witness” to his sound “mental health and well-being the day before he passed away.”
“He was doing great when he was sober. He looked happy. He looked healthy,” she shares. – He only had good things to say.
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“That’s kind of my role in all of this,” she explains. “I’m not a friend of the family or a close friend or anything like that, so I’m just here to clear up the situation and say that there was nothing strange going on. He was completely normal, he was super nice.”
“He was looking forward to life, and that’s the scale… of what I saw the day before he passed away,” she concludes.
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Perry died at his home in Los Angeles on Saturday after apparently drowning. The star, who was 54 years old, was best known for his role as Chandler Bing Friends for 10 seasons from 1994 to 2004.
The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed to PEOPLE that an autopsy has been completed and the results are pending a toxicology report. However, the online record has the status of the actor’s cause of death currently listed as “delayed” as “further investigation is pending.”
The actor’s family released a statement to PEOPLE on Sunday, saying, “We are heartbroken by the tragic loss of our beloved son and brother. Matthew brought so much joy to the world, both as an actor and as a friend. You all meant so much to him and we appreciate the tremendous outpouring love.”
Links: Matthew Perry Was ‘Looking Forward to Life’ and Urged Others to Follow Their ‘Dreams’ (Exclusive) – Tekmonk Bio, Matthew Perry Was ‘Looking Forward to Life’ and Urged Others to Follow Their ‘Dreams’ (Exclusive) – Kungfutv, Matthew Perry Was ‘Looking Forward to Life’ and Urged Others to Follow Their ‘Dreams’ (Exclusive) – Hot News