Darius Campbell Danesh’s girlfriend has confirmed his true cause of death, 10 months after the Scottish Pop Idol star passed away.

The singer died at the age of 41 back in August 2022, after he was found unresponsive in a hotel in Minnesota. Reports at the time said that he had died from “inhalation of chloroethane”.

Danesh’s post-mortem documents also listed “suffocation” as having led to his death, which was ruled an accident.

Now, Lauren Cheek has confirmed that his death was caused by an undetected condition that caused his heart to swell to twice its normal size.

“Darius was living with this heart condition that he didn’t know he had,” she told The Sun.

“His mum told me they only found out after they did the autopsy. His heart was twice the size it was supposed to be, which was fitting, because that is genuinely how he was – he had so much love.”

She added: “That’s what killed him – the substance mixed with his heart and he couldn’t take it.”

Darius Campbell Danesh
Darius Campbell Danesh CREDIT: David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images

The post-mortem also showed that Danesh had a broken neck after he was involved in a car crash with his friend Gerard Butler in 2010.

According to Cheek, Danesh “refused to get help or complain about it” and used chloroethane “because he was in so much pain and he didn’t want to take pills, not even aspirin”.

She said: “I don’t think it ever fully healed and then he rebroke it because he got hit by a car in London a year or two before he died when he was riding a bike.

Danesh came third on Pop Idol in 2002, behind Will Young and Gareth Gates. Following his success on the show, Simon Cowell offered him a record deal, which he turned down. Nevertheless, his single ‘Colourblind’ reached Number One on the UK charts and he later released a Top 10 album, ‘Dive In’.

Cheek is releasing a new podcast, Grieving Back To Life, on August 19, on what would have been Danesh’s 43rd birthday.


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