Disney Child Star Found Dead In His Glendale Home At 31
Actor Michael Galeota was found dead at 31 in his Glendale home on Sunday.Galeota, who starred in the Disney TV show The Jersey, was found dead in his home located in the 900 block of West Glenoaks Blvd. at about 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reports.
He had gone to a hospital last week for abdominal pain, but headed home last Wednesday against the recommendation of doctors, TMZ reports. A friend decided to check on Galeota on Sunday after not hearing from him over the weekend. When no one answered, the friend entered the home via a window and discovered Galeota's body in the living room.
The actor had a history of illness and frequently experienced hypertension, high cholesterol and diverticulitis. L.A. County Coroner Lt. Fred Corral said that it appears Galeota died of natural causes. There is an autopsy pending.
Galeota was originally from Smithtown, NY. His best known and last role was as Nick Lighter in The Jersey, a Disney series about a football jersey that had the ability to allow the four teenagers who owned it to take over the bodies of various athletes. The series ran from 1999 to 2004.
His brother, Jimmy Galeota, told USA Today that additional details surrounding his brother's death "will be released later once my family is ready."
According to a GoFundMe set up by Galeota's family to cover funeral expenses:
He was a precious gift—loving, giving, compassionate, joyful and intelligent. A great inspiration for anyone that heard his genuine, humble, witty and joyful voice, or experienced his smile, laughter and love for just a moment. To know him was to love him. His humble nature hid a great compassionate and loving human being, with a huge heart. He cared profoundly for his family and friends. Mike was a great giver, always ready and able to care for others.