"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 and made celebrities of Montieth and the rest of the relatively unknown cast. Over the past four seasons, he delivered renditions of such classics as U2's "One" and R.E.M.'s "Losing My Religion."
Monteith served as the show's resident hunk with a heart of gold. He played Finn Hudson, a football quarterback with two left feet who found more camaraderie in the choir room than on the football field. After his character graduated high school, Hudson sought out to find himself before settling on what he wanted to do with his life: become a teacher and mentor.
Outside the Vancouver hotel where Monteith's body was discovered, a makeshift memorial popped up where fans left flowers and notes commemorating the actor. #RipCoryMonteith and #StayStrongLea became trending topics on Twitter.
AP writers Jeremy Hainsworth in Vancouver, Lynn Elber in Los Angeles, and Charles J. Gans and Frazier Moore in New York contributed to this report.
Follow AP Entertainment Writer Derrik J. Lang on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/derrikjlang .
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