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Lea Michele, Cory Monteith

Glee star Lea Michele’s publicist has asked the public to respect the grieving actress’s privacy following the death of her boyfriend, Cory Monteith.

Cory, who also played Lea’s on/off boyfriend on Glee, was found dead in a hotel room at Vancouver's Fairmont Pacific Rim in Canada on July 13.  

Stars have flocked to social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook to pay their respects to the tragic 31-year-old and to ask their fans to pray for Lea, and now her representative has released a short statement, which reads: ‘We ask that everyone kindly respect Lea's privacy during this devastating time.’ 

The actress, 26, was helping Cory overcome addiction issues following a stint in rehab in April. When news broke of his treatment, she told People magazine, ‘I love and support Cory and will stand by him through this.’ 

Cory spent a month in rehab and appeared to be in positive spirits when he checked out, tweeting, ‘Sending out big love to everyone. Thank you for the continued support! It means the world to me!’ 

His Glee co-stars Kristin Chenoweth and Dot-Marie Jones were among the first celebrities to take to Twitter to pay tribute to the actor. Dot-Marie wrote, ‘Cory was not only a hell of a friend, he was one amazing man that I will hold close to my heart forever. I am blessed to have worked with him and love him so much.’ 

And a statement from Fox, the TV network behind Glee, issued a statement calling Cory ‘an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person’. 

Other Glee co-stars who have offered up their thoughts on Twitter include Damian McGinty, Mark Salling and Iqbal Theba, who plays Principal Figgins on the show. Iqbal wrote, ‘OMG!! My Cory....’

while Neil Patrick Harris added, ‘How sad to read about Cory Monteith passing away. What a shame. He was a lovely, kind, talented guy and will be missed.’

Rihanna also paid tribute writing, ‘Cory Monteith, may your spirit be at peace, and may you fly with the angels... Heartbreaking, my prayers are with all of his loved ones!’

Cory’s body was discovered after he failed to check out of the Vancouver hotel following a week-long stay. 

A representative for the star states, ‘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.’

Police have ruled out foul play and an autopsy is scheduled to take place on July 15.

Doug LePard, acting chief of Vancouver Police, says, ‘Mr Monteith checked into the hotel [on] July 6 and was due to check out of the room [on Saturday]. There were others with Mr Monteith in his room earlier... but video and fob key entries show him returning to his room by himself in the early morning hours and we believe he was alone when he died.’

Born in Alberta, Canada, the actor quit school at the age of 16 and battled drug and alcohol issues before checking into rehab at 19.

He turned his life around and began acting, landing minor roles in films such as Final Destination 3, Whisper and Deck the Halls – but his big break came in 2009 when he bagged the part of Finn Hudson on hit US TV show Glee.

Cory struck up a relationship with his co-star Lea Michele, but his addiction issues resurfaced and he checked into rehab in March.

The star completed his treatment in April and took to Twitter to thank fans for their well wishes, writing in a post, ‘Sending out big love to everyone. Thank you for the continued support! It means the world to me!’

Glee's executive producers, 20th Century Fox and Fox Broadcasting Company, have paid tribute to their star, stating, ‘We are deeply saddened by this tragic news. Cory was an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person. He was a true joy to work with and we will all miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones.’

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