Following news that boyfriend Cory Monteith's tragic death on July 13 was caused by a lethal mix of heroin and alcohol, friends close to Lea Michele tell In Touch how the Glee actress is coping with the devastating loss of her on-and-off-screen love.
“Lea is in a haze of disbelief,” says a source close to the actress, whose rep released a statement calling it a “devastating time” for Lea. “She was the biggest cheerleader of him getting sober,” the source tells the new issue of In Touch, on newsstands now. “He fought for sobriety for her because she wanted it for him so badly. I think she hoped she could save him.”
Although Cory made no secret of his longtime struggle with addiction, seeking treatment at the age of 19 and recently completing a 30-day rehab program for substance abuse, pals say Lea “feels like this could have been stopped and she just can't stop blaming herself.”
An insider explains that Lea can’t help but think “of how Cory promised her he was fine and clean and she believed him.” Meanwhile, In Touch can reveal Cory was spotted in a gritty section of Vancouver’s Gastown neighborhood (known for drug activity and crime) on July 12, the morning before he died. “I saw him walking by himself around 9 a.m.,” local Ashley Hiebert tells In Touch. “He wasn’t smiling. He was wearing a black hoodie and looked tired and like he had somewhere to be. It’s an odd part of town for him to be exploring in the morning, because nothing is open.”
Despite his reported "double life," pals say Lea was holding onto hope that Cory did not die from a drug overdose, and the autopsy results have made the news “that much more difficult.”
“She is still processing everything,” says the insider. “It doesn’t even seem real.”
Lea and Cory started dating in late 2011, and went public with their romance in February 2012.
For more inside Cory’s tragic death, his final days, and how Lea is coping, pick up the new issue of In Touch Weekly, on newsstands now.