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Simon Cowell leads tributes for Darius Danesh following singer’s death

The ‘Popstars‘ singer has been flooded by tributes from musicians and fans

By Hollie Geraghty

Darius Campbell Danesh and Simon Cowell
Darius Campbell Danesh and Simon Cowell (Pictures: Alamy/ Wikimedia Creative Commons).

Simon Cowell and Gareth Gates are among stars leading tributes for singer Darius Campbell Danesh, who was found dead in his US apartment last week (11 August), aged 41.

“I first saw Darius on television over 20 years ago and I got to know him really well,” Cowell said of the star (via BBC), who appeared on ITV talent shows Popstars and Pop Idol.

“He was charismatic, funny and just a great person to be with.”

He added: “His passing, for someone so young, is an absolute tragedy and my heart goes out to his family and friends.”

Gareth Gates, who was second on Pop Idol in 2002 ahead of Campbell Danesh and behind Will Young, described the singer as “a big brother” to him while they were on the show together.

“I can’t quite believe the news of my dear friend Darius passing. I’m heartbroken,” Gates wrote on Instagram.

“Darius took me under his wing during our time in Pop Idol, like a big brother; always looking out for me and for that I thank you my friend.”

He continued: “I will miss our chats. He was one of the most beautiful, intelligent and gentle souls I was lucky enough to know, a soul that lit up every room.”

Danesh’s ex-wife, Canadian actor Natasha Henstridge, also paid tribute to the singer.

“I have found the paradox that if you love until it hurts there can be no more hurt – only more love’ – Mother Theresa,” she wrote in a now deleted Instagram post alongside photos of their time together (via The Independent).

“There are no words Darius… only Love Love Love. Forever Janam.”

Myleen Klass, who also found fame on Popstars with the band Hear’Say, posted a throwback photo of the contestants together, captioned: “Back at the very start. RIP Darius.”

Michelle Heaton and Jessica Pietersen from the band Liberty X who appeared on the show, also paid tribute.

“So sad … thoughts with Darius family right now x always our Britney,” Heaton wrote, a reference to his memorable rendition of ‘…Baby One More Time’.

Pietersen also described the singer as an “absolute gentleman” who had a “natural warmth” about him.

The tributes follow words from Rylan Clark-Neal, who said he was “proper sad about Darius”, and Lorraine Kelly who described the Campbell Danesh as “a really good bloke”.

A statement announcing Campbell Danesh’s death said: “It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Darius Campbell Danesh. Darius was found unresponsive in bed in his apartment room in Rochester, Minnesota, on August 11 and was pronounced dead in the afternoon by the local medical examiners’ office.

“The local police department have confirmed that there were no signs of intent or suspicious circumstances. The cause of his sudden death is unknown at this stage while medical examinations continue.

“We ask that you kindly respect our wishes for privacy at this time whilst we come to terms with the tragic loss of our son and brother.”