Glee star Cory Monteith won the hearts of many as Finn Hudson, a soulful jock turned singer.
Unfortunately, his too-soon death at the age of 31 of a drug and alcohol overdose broke many of those hearts.
In happier times, Monteith's Glee star Lea Michele once described her co-star and boyfriend as "a really hot, 6'3" Canadian," and we'd add his other crushworthy quality: his incredible singing voice. As well, Monteith was known off camera as a kind, sweet man who made all feel at home.
Despite his boyish appearance and playing a naive, Ohio-raised teen, Cory Monteith is a recovering addict. In Parade magazine, he revealed his troubled past, discussing how after his parents divorced he'd turned to drugs and alcohol and later dropped out of school. He even went as far as stealing from his friends and family to support his addiction. It wasn't until an intervention and a family member's threat that Monteith finally got his life back on track.
As well as his work on Glee, Monteith co-hosted the Teen Choice Awards in 2010 and has received several nominations from the Teen Choice Awards, finally winning in 2011 for "Choice TV: Actor Comedy." He also scored nominations from the People's Choice Awards and Do Something Awards.
Like most hunky Hollywood actors, Monteith's dating status was a constant source of interest to fans and publications. In 2010, Taylor Swift and Cory Monteith were seen at a pre-Grammy party and later spotted bowling together alongside Taylor's BFF, Selena Gomez. While the media continued to speculate, the pair insisted they were just friends. Even Ellen DeGeneres' canny efforts to get Cory to come clean on her show went in vain. Cory simply said Taylor was "lovely," but he doesn't "know where the time is to date these days." Good deflection!
Monteith eventually found time to date, because he and his co-star Michele went public with their relationship in early 2012. Cory and Lea not only worked together, but were seen taking a romantic getaway to Cabo and looking stunning at Paris Fashion Week.
Even when Monteith checked into a rehab center for substance abuse in March 2013, the couple remained united and strong.
And then tragedy struck. On July 13, 2013, fans and Hollywood alike were shocked and saddened to learn Cory died inside his Vancouver hotel room. Toxicology reports indicated mixed drug toxicity involving heroin and alcohol was the cause of death. He was just 31.
Two weeks after his death, Michele tweeted a sweet picture of her and Monteith and wrote, "Cory will forever be in my heart."