It's no secret that fame can be a double edged sword. While booking a major role on a TV show or film can quickly launch actors into the world of celebrity, the pressure has also been known to be the downfall of many one time stars. With the case of Fox's former musical comedy series Glee, there have been quite a few major controversies and pitfalls to becoming a New Directions Member. Actor Mark Salling (aka Puck) had a hard fall from grace when he was found in possession of child pornography, and now it looks like his impending prison sentence was just too much for him mentally. Because we've just learned that the actor/singer has killed himself at the age of 35.
News of Mark Salling's death began pouring in on the afternoon of January 30th, shocking the world of entertainment and the millions of former Gleeks out there. While the cause of death was originally a mystery, TMZ reported that Salling hanged himself within his home in Los Angeles. Specifically, law enforcement revealed that Salling was found outside, utilizing a tree in his yard to end his own life. This was apparently not Salling's only attempt at suicide, after reportedly cutting his writs in August of 2017.
Mark Salling's suicide comes in the wake of his most recent court appearance. One month ago, Salling plead guilty to possession of child sexual abuse imagery and was awaiting sentencing in March 2018. Salling reportedly had thousands of these images on his computer, and the authorities were tipped off by an ex girlfriend with knowledge of his computer's contents. This resulted in his arrest two years ago, with Salling's potential prison time looming above him since. If Salling had not killed himself, the actor had the potential to go to prison for 4 to 7 years-- a reduced sentence due to his plea deal.
But the sentencing and eventual prison stay proved too much for Mark Salling's psyche, and he took his own life before the law could run its course. His death is sure to inspire mixed feelings from the public and law enforcement, as technically justice was never served in this harrowing situation.
Mark Salling wasn't the only Glee star who has had trouble since achieving fame. In fact, he's not even the only actor to have died since debuting on TV back in 2009. Series lead Cory Monteith struggled with substance abuse following his newly acquired fame, and he shockingly died in 2013-- while the Glee was still very much at the height of its popularity.
Naya Rivera (aka Santana) also had legal issues of her own as of late. She was arrested for domestic battery over the holidays, although her estranged husband has since dropped the charges. But that's yet another Glee star who has had struggles after debuting in the public eye.
Now let's hope that no other tragedies or legal troubles hit the rest of the cast of Glee, as it's going to be very difficult for even the most hardcore fans to re-watch the series and not think of Cory Monteith and Mark Salling's personal struggles and untimely deaths.