MONTREAL, Quebec (AFP) – Cory Monteith, the Canadian star of the hit TV musical series “Glee”, died of an apparent overdose of heroin and alcohol, the British Columbia coroner’s office said Tuesday.
The 31-year-old Monteith, who had struggled in the past with substance abuse and checked into a rehab facility in April, was found dead Saturday in his Vancouver hotel room
“There is no evidence to suggest this is anything other than the most sad and tragic accident,” coroner Barbara McLintock said in a statement released on YouTube.
“The cause of death was a mixed drug toxicity and it involved heroin, primarily, and also alcohol.”
McLintock said the coroner’s investigation was continuing, and that no further statements would be made until it was completed.
Police said they believed Monteith had been alone when he took the heroin and when he died.
Monteith starred on “Glee” as Finn Hudson, a star high school football player who joined a motley crew of students in the glee club.
In the most recent season, he returned as a graduate coaching new singers.
Off-screen, Monteith dated his co-star Lea Michele, with whom he sang the show’s signature cover of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’.”
Michele’s representatives issued a statement Tuesday asking for continued privacy for the 26-year-old actress and for Monteith’s family.
“Lea is deeply grateful for all the love and support she’s received from family, friends, and fans,” the statement said.
“Since Cory’s passing, Lea has been grieving alongside his family and making appropriate arrangements with them. They are supporting each other as they endure this profound loss together.”
The actor had spoken openly about his past struggles with drugs and alcohol, which began in his youth.
Before shooting to nationwide fame on the Fox hit musical show, Monteith had played minor roles in TV series such as “Smallville” and “Kyle XY”.
Photo Credit: AFP/Kevin Winter