Tyler Perry is making a statement after revealing one of his crew members died from coronavirus.
In an Instagram post Wednesday, Perry shared a series of photos of Charles Gregory, a hairstylist who worked with the comedian.
"Today it’s with a heavy heart that I inform you of the passing of one of our crew members. Mr. Charles Gregory was a hairstylist that had worked with us for many years. The man was warm, loving and hilarious. We all loved to see him coming and hear his laughter," Perry wrote. "Charles lost his battle with COVID-19 today. It saddens me to think of him dying this way. My sincerest prayers are with his family."
Perry urged black people to take the virus seriously, as it is killing them at higher rates compared with other Americans in some major cities.
"I heard a black person say, 'Black people don’t get it.' That is a lie! You can get it, and you will get it if we don’t do what we're being told to do," he wrote. "A 26 year old black woman died the other day, a 44 year old black man died the other day, not to mention the hundreds of people that are dying every few minutes. Your age does not matter!! Your health does not matter. You could be totally healthy, and you could die!"
The "A Fall from Grace" director encouraged people to socially distance and do everything they could to stay safe.
"Please, please, please, I beg you to take this seriously. You have to socially distance yourself. That means stop hanging out, stop congregating, stop doing anything that will put not only your life in danger but also the lives of so many others," Perry wrote.
Perry's PSA comes shortly after he paid for people's groceries during senior shopping hours.
Lori Freehling fully expected to pay for her groceries Wednesday morning.
So when she found out at the register that her total was being covered by renowned actor and director Perry, a New Orleans native, Freehling couldn't help but shed a tear or two.
"She said, 'He just paid for your groceries as his random act of kindness,' " Freehling wrote in a Facebook post. " 'Really?' I said as my eyes teared up, thanking her as she handed my my receipt. Thank you Tyler Perry!"
Call it a hometown discount.
Perry paid it forward at 29 Winn-Dixie stores across Louisiana and at 44 Kroger stores in Atlanta, where Perry resides, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The act of charity was held during the stores' senior hours, when older citizens who are more susceptible to COVID-19 are able to shop by themselves.
Floored by the generosity, Freehling took the money she would have spent and followed Perry's example.
"To pay it forward, I made a donation in your honor to Second Harvest Food Bank for what would have been the cost of my groceries today," Freehling wrote.
Perry, the mind behind the popular "Madea" movies, is no stranger to generosity. Perry paid of nearly $500,000 in layaway balances at Atlanta-area Walmarts in 2018.
And he's also not the only New Orleans native to give back during the pandemic. Former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning donated an undisclosed amount to United Way of Southeast Louisiana's Hospitality Cares Pandemic Response Fund, according to WGNO.
CONFIRMED: @tylerperry paid for all groceries during Seniors Hour at 44 Atlanta-area @Kroger stores. Look at these faces -- you can see the smiles and tears through the masks! pic.twitter.com/MIm7F5Hssr— Brendan Keefe (@BrendanKeefe) April 8, 2020
@tylerperry Thank you Sir for my wonderful blessing this morning with the purchase of my groceries from Winn Dixie! I was totally surprised and very grateful. The early bird gets the warm. #randomactofkindness #Godblessyoutylerperry #Grateful4You #Godsvessell— Debra Batiste (@dab141) April 8, 2020
@tylerperry Thank you for your kindness today. I went shopping in Metairie, Louisiana this morning and your wave a goodness was felt. You put a smile on face and in my heart. God bless! 🙂— emily brady (@ocd4dmb) April 8, 2020
Thank you @tylerperry for what you did for the people in Louisiana! You EARNER everything you have and we’re grateful for you giving back...especially the seniors. 👏🏾 🙏🏾— Jasmine Carter (@JasmineEnjoli) April 8, 2020
👏 @tylerperry paid it forward and purchased groceries for nearly 3,000 senior shoppers today at Kroger stores across Atlanta. You can see how much this means by the look on their faces. Thank you, Tyler, for your generosity! 💙 pic.twitter.com/L57nfNqm3g— Kroger (@kroger) April 8, 2020
😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭😭❤— Victoria Brownworth ☣ #StayHomeSaveLives (@VABVOX) April 8, 2020
Awesome. What a generous gesture. We need more of this type of news. Kudos Mr. Perry.— Penni With an I (@pjmill4) April 8, 2020
"...whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." At a time where there is so much posturing, you are living the scripture. Thank you so much and may God bless you and yours.— Dancy (@KyHellsbelle) April 8, 2020
You got me with this. Crying. I wish I could do it, too. Paying it forward is so incredible! The next time I'm in the grocery store, I'll do it for the person behind me! God will provide! Thank you so much, @tylerperry!!— What_Now_US (@What_Now_US) April 8, 2020
So glad @tylerperry isn’t afraid to show how big his heart is ❤️— SavoySummer (@SavoySummer) April 8, 2020
@tylerperry is a wonderful man and we love him here in Atlanta. He does kind gracious things like this all of the time. He does all of this behind the scenes and is a true hero!— ugagator (@JillPuterbaugh) April 8, 2020
What a class act! Reaffirmed my belief in humanity!— SJ (@sjohn866) April 8, 2020
Thank you, Mr. Perry! 👏😊❤️ pic.twitter.com/sl7sEKUfZp— Pernickety Panda (@PernicketyPanda) April 8, 2020
This is the way to be a MILLIONAIRE! God will continue to bless him because he knows how to Be a Blessing! Thank You @tylerperry!— Rhonda DuBose #VoteBlue2020 (@RhoniDu) April 8, 2020
This article originally appeared on Lafayette Daily Advertiser: Coronavirus: Tyler Perry pays for groceries during 'senior hours'