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Last Updated: Sunday October 11 2009 17:22 GMT

Boyzone star Stephen Gately dies

Stephen Gately

Stars pay tribute to Stephen Gately

Boyzone singer Stephen Gately has died while on holiday in Majorca, aged 33.

Spanish police said there were no signs of suspicious circumstances, but the cause of his death is not yet known.

Managed by X Factor judge Louis Walsh, Boyzone were one of Britain's biggest boybands and had loads of hits in the 1990s, including six UK number ones.

Stephen was on holiday with his partner Andy Cowles. His Boyzone bandmates said they were "completely devastated" by the loss of their "friend and brother".

"We have shared such wonderful times together over the years and were all looking forward to sharing many more," they said in a statement.

Picture gallery
Boyzone: (L-R) Shane, Mikey, Ronan, Stephen and Keith

"Stephen was a beautiful person in both body and spirit. He lit up our lives and those of the many friends he had all over the world."

Louis Walsh pulled out of Sunday's live X Factor finals after hearing the news as a spokesperson said he was "very shocked and exceptionally upset".

Earlier, Louis described Stephen as "a great man" and said he'd seen him at an awards ceremony on Monday.

Boyzone's rise to fame started in the 1990s and included 16 top five hits, including No Matter What.

Before the group decided to take a break in 2000, Stephen Gately became one of the first stars of his time to openly reveal that he was gay and had a boyfriend.

He worked on several solo projects, including starring in West End musicals and ITV's Dancing On Ice, before the boys announced they were getting back together again in 2007 for a comeback tour.