Cory Monteith, the beloved leading man of hugely successful hit show Glee, has tragically been found dead at the age of just 31.
The Canadian actor was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, on May 11, 1982 to interior decorator Ann McGregor and military man Joe Monteith. He has an older brother, Shaun, with whom he was raised by McGregor following her divorce from their father.
Cory could read at a fourth-grade level by the age of five, but sadly it is thought that the absence of his father led to trouble with drugs and alcohol as he grew up; resulting in falling attendance and performance at school. He eventually left school at the age of 16, having turned to petty crimes in the midst of his drug and alcohol addictions.
He stated that a turning point in his life came at the age of 19 when his mother and relatives staged an intervention, and at 19 he entered a rehab clinic.
Cory Monteith (WENN)
At the beginning of his acting career, Cory managed to bag roles in Final Destination 3, Whisper and Deck The Halls. He also enjoyed a 7-episode stint in Kyle XY, and his other small-screen credits included Smallville, Supernatural, Flash Gordon, Stargate Atlantis and Stargate SG-1.
In 2009, he got his major break in the groundbreaking musical comedy series Glee, in the leading role of Finn Hudson. His singing ability initially disappointed casting execs, but he soon turned it around by capturing what one called a "naive, but not stupid, sweetness" that was essential to the part.
Glee earned Cory a string of awards and nominations; including the 2011 Teen Choice Award for actor in a comedy series. He also appeared in the 2011 film Monte Carlo and Glee's 3D Concert Movie, which came out in the same year.
Cory Monteith and Lea Michele (WENN)
In 2011, Cory became involved with Straight But Not Narrow, an organisation aimed at changing the minds of young heterosexual people in their attitudes towards the LGBT community. He also filmed the 23rd GLAAD Media Awards in New York City.
Sadly, his old troubles returned when, in March 2013, he voluntarily admitted himself into a treatment facility for a substance addiction. He completed the course on April 26.
Until his death, Cory was dating his Glee co-star Lea Michele. She had said in an interview: "I don't even remember a time when he wasn't my boyfriend. No one knows me better than Cory. No one knows wht it's been like to go through this more than he does. Feeling like you have that net underneath you allows you to jump higher and go further. He makes me feel like I can do anything. For the first time in my life, I feel really, really settled and happy. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world."
The actor, aged 31, was found dead in his hotel room on July 31, 2013, in Vancouver, Canada, when hotel staff noticed he had not checked out of his room. His publicist confirmed: "We are so saddened to confirm that the reports on the death of Cory Monteith are accurate. We are in shock and mourning this tragic loss."