When he died at age 38 March 10, Corey Haim "was living in the Oakwood Apartments with his mom, very broke, very destitute," his longtime pal Corey Feldman said on CNN's Larry King Live Wednesday, noting that the Oakwood Apartments in Los Angeles is "month-to-month living."
Haim — who filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1997, listing debts for medical expenses and more than $200,000 in state and federal taxes — "didn't even have a car," added Feldman.
In the end, Haim — who won the heart of Hollywood in such 80s classics as The Lost Boys and Lucas — "had nobody to turn to," Feldman said.
"I appreciate the fact that everybody really cares and — and is trying to show their expression of sorrow right now, but at the end of the day, Larry, where were all these people the last 10 years, the last 15 years of Corey's life?" he asked.
"Where were all these people to lend a hand out, to reach out to him and say, you know, you're a legend … you're an amazingly talented, wonderful person who's really never gone out of his way to hurt anybody other than himself," he went on.
In the entertainment industry, "we build people up as children, we put them on pedestals and then when we decide that they're not marketable anymore, we walk away from them," said Feldman. "And then we taunt them and we tease them … Why is it OK to kick somebody when they're down?"
Feldman said that Haim "very much felt that way … we need to think about every time we laugh at somebody in the tabloids, or every time we poke a finger at somebody and say they're a joke or they're fat or they're a drug addict or they're washed up or they're a loser, we need to look at ourselves and say, who am I?"
But Feldman admitted that Haim "burnt a lot of bridges in the industry. He made mistakes, as I did when I was young. I took 20 years of rebuilding to get to the point where I am today, where people actually take me seriously. Corey made a lot of mistakes for many years longer than I did. And it took him a lot longer to get to the point of recognition. However, once he got there, nobody was left to pull him back up."
Feldman stopped speaking to Haim in 2008 because the actor refused to get help for his substance-abuse problems. But recently, Haim "shaped up," Feldman said. "He got his act together. He was doing so much better."
When Haim's mom was diagnosed with breast cancer, "it was the first time I ever saw Corey grow up. He was grown up. He was responsible. He was there with her every day [for] the chemotherapy. He was there with her everyday getting the radiation. I actually picked them both up from the hospital and drove them back to their apartment, because he didn't have a car."
Added Feldman, "It was the first time in my life that I had ever seen Corey really be that responsible, stand-up guy."