Luke Perry’s longtime on-screen paramour Shannen Doherty is speaking out after his death about the “special kind of love” she shared with the actor.
Tributes from co-stars, collaborators and fans of Perry immediately came pouring in on social media and now Doherty, who starred on the teen soap alongside the actor for years, has broken her silence.
“I am in shock. Heartbroken. Devastated by the loss of my friend. I have so many memories with Luke that make me smile and that are forever imprinted on my heart and mind,” the actress told People.
Perry was surrounded at the time of his death by his loved ones, including two children, Jack, 21, and Sophie, 18, who Doherty called his “biggest accomplishment.”
She went on to describe Perry as a “smart, quiet, humble and complex man with a heart of gold and a never-ending well of integrity and love.” After falling out of contact following their “90210” days, the former co-stars reconnected shortly before his death and amid Doherty’s own health crisis.
The 47-year-old actress was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, chronicling her treatment on social media. She went into remission two years later.
“Luke reached out to me during my cancer journey and we picked right back up, albeit older and wiser, but that connection remained intact,” she said.
While the two were among the “90210” cast members who didn’t sign on for the reboot, Doherty said the two hoped to collaborate on “something special and meaningful for our fans” in the future.
“There is a special kind of love one has for each other when you are experiencing the journey we did on ‘90210’ and of course life in general. Luke and I were working on show ideas for us. We wanted to work with each other again and create something special and meaningful for our fans at this stage in our lives,” Doherty added. “I will miss him everyday. Every minute. Every second.”
Doherty and Perry starred, of course, as star-crossed teen lovers, Brenda and Dylan, who quickly became a fan-favorite pairing, until she exited the series after the fourth season amid rumored clashes with her co-stars.
Their last meeting occurred just weeks before his death when the two caught up over lunch in February.
“I walked in and there he was, smiling, with his dog Penny and her bed under the booth, happy as can be,” the actress said. “I will never forget — and will miss — Luke looking at me with that smile of his saying … Shan.”
Perry’s other “90210” co-stars, including Tori Spelling, Ian Ziering, Jennie Garth and more, have since remembered the late actor with loving tributes.