Cory Monteith: An ‘Enduring Sweetness’ on Glee

Carin Baer/FOX

updated 08/25/2015 AT 8:16 PM ET

originally published 07/14/2013 AT 11:55 AM ET

Cory Monteith arrived in our homes in 2009 in a happy burst of music, color and youth called Glee.

The news of his death in a Vancouver hotel room comes with the shock of someone dying at only age 31 (he seemed more like 22) – and also with the realization that he takes with him that music, color and youth.

Monteith was Finn Hudson, tall, handsome in a clean, square way. He looked like an old-fashioned teenage dreamboat dropped down in a school so up-to-the-minute in its heterogeneous mix he might have seemed out of place – like Ronald Reagan turning up in his brown suit to audition for the annual musical (Rent, say).