'Real World' Star Joey Kovar Has Died But Hopefully Not in Vain (VIDEO)

joey kovarReally sad news -- TMZ reports that Joey Kovar of Real World: Hollywood and Celebrity Rehab fame was found dead this morning in a friend's house near Chicago. A female friend discovered him with blood coming out of his nose and ears, and when the paramedics arrived, they pronounced him dead on the scene. The 29-year-old's family believes it was a drug overdose.

If you saw Joey on either of those reality shows, you know that he struggled to overcome his cocaine and alcohol addictions. When he left The Real World to go into rehab, he admitted how hard it was to squash those demons.

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Sometimes it's really easy to ignore substance abuse. There are millions of ways to justify it from both sides -- whether you're the one abusing or it's a friend or a family member -- you can tell yourself that they (or you) are just young and partying, or that it's a phase, or everyone's like this, or they'll (or you'll) stop once school's back in session, or work picks up, or the divorce is final, or or or.

Joey, from what I saw through the Bunim/Murray lens, may have been ignoring his problem for a few years, but he eventually made the brave decision to go to rehab on the show, and was able to stay sober for a long period of time. (On the RW: Hollywood reunion show, he'd been sober for 10 months.) And when he fell off the wagon, he got back on at Celebrity Rehab.

Unfortunately, Joey's battle was lost, but hopefully his life touched a few people out there, maybe more than a few, who saw what he went through and were inspired to get help. It's easy to criticize people who go on reality TV and assume that they're not serious about getting help since, you know, it comes with a side of fame, but I don't know, I have to think that Joey and others like him go on these shows in an effort to help others as much as they do it for the notoriety.

Rest in peace, Joey.

Did you watch Joey on RW or Celebrity Rehab?

 

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