‘Stranger Things’ Star Gaten Matarazzo Pays Tribute To Cousin After Fatal Car Accident

The young actor penned a heartfelt tribute to his cousin who passed away on Tuesday.

Stranger Things Gaten Matarazzo

Stranger Things star Gaten Matarazzo has written a heartfelt tribute to his 19-year-old cousin Joey who died in a car accident on Tuesday.

The actor, known for his role as Dustin Henderson in the smash-hit Netflix series took to Instagram to share his tragic loss along with two photos of himself and his cousin. Matarazzo wrote:

“It’s hard to find the right words in moments like this. My cousin Joey passed away this morning after a terrible car accident. He had just recently turned 19. He was such an important figure in my life and the lives of my entire family. I grew up with him and loved him like he was my brother.”


“I love you bud. I will cherish the memories made with you for the rest of my life. There were plenty of tears today, but I know that once they dry we will look back with only smiles on our faces. And even now I can’t help but giggle at the little memories that seemed so minuscule just two days ago, but mean so much more now. The little things seem to flood my head more than I ever thought they would. Like when I kicked your ass at ping pong two weeks ago or when we played violent video games without telling my mom when we were younger and when you, Carmen, and I would fight over the top bunk until we gave up and all slept on it. I love you. I miss you. Rest well.”

Matarazzo has since seen an outpour of support from friends and the Stranger Things fan community. The actor is set to reprise his role in Stranger Things 4, however, when the series will resume filming remains a mystery.

Stranger Things 4 had completed principal photography for two episodes when Netflix halted production due to the Coronavirus pandemic in March. Plot details remain under wraps, however, the new season will feature the return of David Harbour’s Chief Hopper who was presumed dead in the Stranger Things 3 finale. Harbour has since teased a huge reveal for the character’s backstory in the fourth season.

Here is the official synopsis for the third season of Stranger Things:

“It’s 1985 in Hawkins, Indiana, and summer’s heating up. School’s out, there’s a brand new mall in town, and the Hawkins crew are on the cusp of adulthood. Romance blossoms and complicates the group’s dynamic, and they’ll have to figure out how to grow up without growing apart. Meanwhile, danger looms. When the town’s threatened by enemies old and new, Eleven and her friends are reminded that evil never ends; it evolves. Now they’ll have to band together to survive, and remember that friendship is always stronger than fear.”

Stranger Things stars Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard, Millie Bobby Brown, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Noah Schnapp, Sadie Sink, Natalia Dyer, Charlie Heaton, Joe Keery, Dacre Montgomery, Maya Hawke, Priah Ferguson, and Cara Buono.

Stranger Things 3 is now available on Netflix. Stay tuned to Heroic Hollywood for the latest news on Gaten Matarazzo and the future of Stranger Things as we learn it. You can also subscribe to our YouTube channel for more content in the future.

Michael Mistroff

Michael Mistroff

News Editor, Film/TV Reporter at Heroic Hollywood.