'Australian Idol' country star Kate Cook dead at 36

CAustralian Idol country music star found dead on Monday morning after last seen wandering into bush near her home. 

Her body was found today around 500 yards from her home in Lowood after concerned friends alerted police last night, reports Nine.com.au. Police are not treating her death as suspicious at this stage.

 

Kate shot to fame as a semi-finallist on the Australian Idol contest in 2009. Before entering the TV talent show she worked in a slaughterhouse cutting meat.

 

She grew up playing guitar by the campfire and was inspired to sing by her mother's suicide when she was 16. She told the Queensland Times in 2013: “Mum always played the guitar and when I was ten years old she taught me a couple of chords.

 

“After that I was always taking the guitar out to the paddock to play, which later developed into a passion for songwriting.”

 

For her Australian Idol audition she performed an original song called Make You Stay that paid tribute to her late mother. She told judges: “Two days before I turned 17 my younger sister and I found her. She committed suicide, so it was pretty tough. “I’ve had a long road to sort of find myself after being lost for a long time. So I sort found myself through strength and music.”

 

After appearing on "Idol" Cook pursued a career in music, touring pubs and clubs across Australia.

But she told the Queensland Times she had found it difficult to carve out a career without a publicist or manager.

 

“Once you’re out of the 'Australian Idol' spotlight, you soon lose the support network of people who helped you during the show,” Cook said.

 

“It took a lot of hard work and help from my sister Paula — who managed me for two years — to keep my music career going.

 

“But I’m extremely humbled by what Idol did for me and overwhelmed with how the country music industry has opened its arms to me.”

 

Cook also credited music with helping her get through tough moments in her life.

 

“Music has helped heal me during difficult times, so I hope that my music helps do the same for others,” she said.

 

Fellow Idol contestant and country music singer Casey Barnes has paid tribute to his “beautiful” friend on Twitter.

 

She wrote about her on Facebook: "I'm kind hearted love to laugh and sing an entertain people!!

Life is too short to live with regrets. So make it the best you can!! Love one another!" RIP

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