Even during his last days, Cory Monteith was thinking of others. In what would be his final fan message (on what would be his final plane flight), he looks happy and healthy as he smiles into a camera he holds himself.
In the exclusive "Good Morning America" video, he star introduces himself simply as "Cory" before offering some advice, "Stay out of trouble and stay in school." While the actual video message is rather short and sweet, it takes on a whole new weight in light of his untimely death.
And it seems that his "Glee" cast mates are finally starting to cope and comfort each other. Three of the show's mainstays, Jane Lynch, Jenna Ushkowitz, and Dianna Agron, met for lunch on Tuesday at Blu Jam café on Melrose Avenue. Jenna and Dianna were chatting with another male companion as they made their way to the trendy eatery.
Though the circumstances that brought them together for this meal are tragic, all three ladies smiled through their pain — even cracking a few laughs between hugs.
Lynch also appeared on "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" Wednesday, where she choked back tears as she talked about her late co-star.
"Cory's one of the biggest hearts, was a real bright light," she told the host and audience. "He was one of those guys that — you know, he knew he was breathing rarified air, the gifts that this wonderful show gave us."
Pausing briefly to regroup, she continued, "He was always aware that it was a gift and he was quite generous. He was one of those adventurous types of people. I always admired how he would get up — you know, he would fly to Mexico; he'd throw parties for his friends. I don't think he left one day of un-lived. He was a bright light in our family and we've lost a really great guy."
Agron, who played one of Monteith's love interests on the show, and co-star Naya Rivera, also released emotional statements on Wednesday.
"I have never lost a friend. In this difficult time, I am leaning on all of the wonderful memories we shared with Cory, how many ways he was able to make us smile," Agron's statement began.
"Cory was and always will be a part of my own family and a good friend," part of Rivera's statement read. "He was a special part of this world and will forever be missed."
But Monteith's co-stars aren't the only ones breaking their silence. His roommate, Justin Neill, also finally spoke out.
"Cory was a wonderful person and truly great friend," Neill told Us Weekly, adding, "He was incredibly generous and always wanted his friends to share and experience his passions and interests." According to the former roommate, those interests included "Snowboarding trips to Mammoth or Big Bear" and "traveling around Australia."
"These are experiences that I shared with Cory and will never forget," Neill mused. "He loved his friends unconditionally and will forever be in our hearts."
These statements of loss were released amidst unconfirmed reports that, while the star will always be remembered, the show will go on without him. According to TMZ, an inside source claims that "Glee" producers and writers are taking their cue from shows like "8 Simple Rules" and "The West Wing," which also continued on after suffering real life deaths.
While reportedly "no decision has been reached about a script yet," it seems fairly certain that the show will resume this fall. The only caveat so far is that the start date may be delayed from mid-September until sometime in November.
We'll have to wait and see how both "Glee" and its fans move forward from this tragedy, but one thing is certain: This 31-year-old man was more than a massive talent; he was a cherished friend who cared deeply for the well being of others even as he struggled to care for himself.
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