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“Glee” actor Monteith died of heroin, alcohol mix

  • ASSOCIATED PRESSFILE - In this Sept. 18, 2011 file photo, Cory Monteith arrives at the 63rd Primetime Emmy Awards, in Los Angeles. ?Glee? launched its new season Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, with the first episode of a two-part Beatles tribute. Lea Michele?s character, Rachel, looks at a cell phone photo that includes a group shot with Monteith?s character, Finn, in it. She sings the Beatles? ?Yesterday? in the scene. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)
    ASSOCIATED PRESS
    FILE - In this Sept. 18, 2011 file photo, Cory Monteith arrives at the 63rd Primetime Emmy Awards, in Los Angeles. ?Glee? launched its new season Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, with the first episode of a two-part Beatles tribute. Lea Michele?s character, Rachel, looks at a cell phone photo that includes a group shot with Monteith?s character, Finn, in it. She sings the Beatles? ?Yesterday? in the scene. (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)

VANCOUVER, British Columbia >> The British Columbia Coroners Service said today investigators found a spoon with drug residue and a used hypodermic needle in the hotel room where "Glee" actor Cory Monteith was found dead in July.

The coroner’s final report issued today, confirmed initial findings that Monteith died from using intravenous heroin combined with alcohol.

The 31-year-old Canadian-born actor was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room July 13.

Monteith had checked into the hotel on July 6 and when he didn’t check out as expected on July 13, hotel staff entered his room and found him unresponsive on the floor. Two empty bottles of champagne were also found in the room.

The investigation said Monteith had a history of illicit drug use with intermittent periods of rehabilitation and of abstinence from drugs. It said when people who have refrained from using opioids such as heroin for a while, their tolerance for the drug decreases.

Monteith was honored at the Emmy awards last month.

Monteith’s death recalled the lives of Heath Ledger, Corey Haim and River Phoenix — actors who battled substance abuse and died in their 20s and 30s. 

Monteith had talked bluntly about struggling with addiction since he was a teenager, calling it a serious problem and telling Parade magazine in 2011 he was "lucky to be alive."

In that interview, he said he was using marijuana and drinking by age 13, and his drug use was "out of control" by the time he was 16. "Anything and everything, as much as possible," he said. "I had a serious problem."

"Glee," with its catchy song-and-dance numbers and high-profile guest stars like Gwyneth Paltrow and Britney Spears, became an instant hit when it debuted in 2009. Monteith served as the show’s resident hunk with a heart of gold.

A tribute to Monteith is planned for "Glee’s" third episode, which will air on Oct. 10.

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