The Script guitarist and co-founder Mark Sheehan dies after 'brief illness'

Mark Sheehan, the lead guitarist and co-founder of the band The Script. Credit: AP

By Lottie Kilraine, Multimedia Producer

Mark Sheehan, the lead guitarist and co-founder of the band The Script, has died aged 46.

Sheehan, who formed the band alongside frontman Danny O’Donoghue and drummer Glen Power, died in hospital after a brief illness.

The band's official social media accounts confirmed the tragic news on Friday.

In a short message accompanied by a photo of Sheehan, the band tweeted: “Much loved husband, father, brother, band mate and friend Mark Sheehan passed away in hospital after a brief illness.

“The family and group ask fans to respect their privacy at this tragic time."

The guitarist was married to Rina Sheehan and they had three children together.

Sheehan, originally from Dublin, was a member of The Script when it formed in 2001.

Along with lead singer O’Donoghue and drummer Power they relocated to London to pursue their musical career.

Mark Sheehan with his bandmates Danny O'Donoghue (center) and Glen Power. Credit: AP

Success followed in 2008 with their album The Script reaching number one in the UK and Ireland, helped by the popularity of singles such as Breakeven.

Other hits included We Cry and The Man Who Can’t Be Moved, with the latter peaking at number two in the UK singles charts.

O’Donoghue and Sheehan have been friends since their school days and had pursued various musical projects together before The Script.

Tributes have been pouring in on social media for the Irish musician.

Irish President Michael D Higgins praised The Script’s “originality and excellence” as he honoured the late star’s memory. In a lengthy statement, the Irish leader also hailed him as an “outstanding” example of Irish “musical success” on the world stage.

Glen Power, Danny O'Donoghue and Mark Sheehan of The Script pictured in 2013 Credit: PA

“All those who knew Mark Sheehan, and those millions more who enjoyed and appreciated his music, will have been deeply shocked to hear of his too-early death,” the president said. He added: “Through their music, Mark and The Script have played an outstanding part in continuing and promoting this proud tradition of Irish musical success across the world. “While Mark will be missed by so many, it is his family who will of course experience the greatest loss. May I extend my deepest sympathies to Mark’s wife Rina, to his children Cameron, Avery and Lil, to his bandmates in The Script, and to all his family and friends.”

Fellow Irish rock band Kodaline described the late star as a "lovely man" as they sent their condolences to his family.

The band tweeted: "So sorry to hear the passing of Mark Sheehan!

"We had the great fortune of getting to spend time in his company over the years and was always such a lovely man!

"Deepest condolences to his family and his The Script brothers."

Other celebrities were also quick to honour his memory on social media. In statement posted on Instagram, Irish presenter Laura Whitmore wrote: “Thinking of you all at this time. “Mark was one of the nicest and most talented men you could meet.” In their own Instagram tribute, Irish pop duo Jedward said: “Everyone in the Irish music industry and worldwide mourn your loss RIP Mark such a talented musician from The Script one of the most iconic Irish groups of our generation.”

The Script are scheduled to support the American artist P!nk during her European tour later this year.

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