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Cory Monteith's death ruled 'accidental'

More than two months after Glee star and former Greater Victoria resident Cory Monteith died from "drug toxicity" in Vancouver, the B.C. Coroners Service has ruled his death accidental.
The Coroner's Service released its final report today following its investigation into Monteith's death. Coroner Claire Thompson concluded that Monteith, 31, died of "mixed drug toxicity, involving intravenous heroin use combined with the ingestion of alcohol."
Monteith was found dead in his room at the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel in downtown Vancouver shortly after noon on July 13. He had been staying since July 6 and was expected to check out the day he was found by hotel staff.
Investigators at the scene found drug paraphernalia, including a spoon with drug residue and a used hypodermic needle, along with two empty champagne bottles and glasses, the Coroner's Service restated. The investigation confirmed that hotel video captured Monteith returning alone to his room at 2:16 a.m. on July 13, and that he was not seen alive again.
The death of the popular TV star, who had admitted to struggling with substance abuse on and off, was felt on the West Shore, where he attended alternative high school Western Opportunity Network, now known as Pacific secondary.
“He had come from a number of schools and I think (Pacific) was a good time for him,” Sooke School District superintendant Jim Cambridge, who never met the future star, said at the time. He called the situation "really sad."
“He had a couple of teachers he kept in contact with even after he got famous. They would send Facebook messages to each other,” Cambridge said.
The Coroner's Service indicated that people who experience periods of abstinence from using opioids, including heroin, may have lessened tolerance to the drugs.
A video report of Wednesday's announcement can be viewed at http://youtu.be/2pdcYgSODLo.
ddescoteau@vicnews.com
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