Boyzone singer Stephen Gately is found dead at his home in Mallorca.
Tributes have been pouring in from around the world following the death of Boyzone singer Stephen Gately.
The 33 year old died unexpectedly in Mallorca, where he shared a holiday home with his partner Andrew Cowles. Spanish police say they are not treating the death as suspicious. A spokesperson for the Gately family said Stephen had died in his sleep, and that it was a tragic accident.
Solicitor Gerald Keane who had been speaking with the family expressed their loss,
They’re devastated and they know the difficulty about this tragic situation where they want people to respect their privacy. They really don't want any intrusion in their lives. They are suffering badly enough as it is but they do understand that Stephen obviously being as popular as he is, it’s worldwide news.
In 1993 Stephen Gately became a member of Ireland’s first boy band when he answered a newspaper advertisement.
After a memorable first appearance on The Late Late Show, Boyzone defied all the critics and enjoyed huge success, with six Number 1 singles, before splitting up in 2000. They re-formed for a reunion tour last year.
Stephen Gately pursued a solo career, but was more successful in London’s West End, playing the lead role in the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. His latest project was a book for children.
The other members of Boyzone arrived in Mallorca tonight.
Tributes and condolences from the music world today included one from fellow Irish boy band Westlife, who said Stephen Gately was,
A friendly positive spirit and a passionate performer. We are, like everyone else, in shock today.
Elton John who is said to be stunned at the news, described Stephen as the
Kindest, gentlest soul.
Neighbours and friends of the singer on his native Sheriff Street were also grieving, as one lady who told RTÉ News today,
Neighbour for eighteen years over in the flats next door. I’m just devastated.
Fans have been paying tribute to the singer on his FaceBook page, with those who had followed Boyzone since their beginning also expressing their sorrow,
He was my favourite one in Boyzone when I was younger, we’re just very sad altogether, yeah.
Stephen Gately’s last social media post was on Tuesday, when he said he was focusing on finishing his book.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 11 October 2009. The reporter is Mary Calpin.