Never forgotten. Gleeks everywhere were thrilled when Lea Michele and Cory Monteith — a.k.a. Rachel Berry and Finn Hudson — took their relationship offscreen. The Glee costars went public with their romance in 2012 and were still dating when the Monte Carlo actor tragically died of an overdose in July 2013 at the age of 31.
During their time together, the Broadway star and the Calgary native seemed absolutely smitten with each other. So much so, Lea and Cory had plans for their future together. “We talked about a lot of things,” she told Glamour UK in 2014. “We talked about children and what we would look like when we grew old, and who would be fat and how we would stay thin. We talked about where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do. We were done. We were it.”
“When you’re at that place in your life with someone, you talk about everything. But today I feel like I was given the best part of Cory, and I’m thankful for that,” she added.
Lea has never shied away from talking about the special connection she shared with her then-boyfriend. Months before he tragically passed, she gushed about the influence Cory had on her life.
“No one knows me better than Cory,” the brunette beauty told Marie Claire for its January 2013 issue. “No one knows what it’s been like to go through this more than he does. Feeling like you have that net underneath you allows you to jump higher and go farther. He makes me feel like I can do anything. For the first time in my life, I feel really, really settled and happy. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world.”
Though he is no longer physically around, Cory still impacts Lea in many ways. “You don’t know how strong you are until you have to be,” she said in 2014. “I lost my grandfather a couple of years ago and I always feel that he’s watching over me. I feel the exact same way about Cory. Every day when I go running, I feel like he’s pushing me to run harder.”
Lea, who welcomed baby No. 1 in August 2020 with husband Zandy Reich, still makes sure to pay tribute to Cory every year on the anniversary of his death.
Keep scrolling to see Lea and Cory’s full relationship timeline.