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    "Downton Abbey" Star Michelle Dockery's Partner Has Died At The Age Of 34

    John Dineen, who started dating the actress in 2013, passed away on Sunday.

    Downton Abbey star Michelle Dockery's reported fiancé has sadly died at the age of 34.

    David M.Benett / Getty Images for Centrepoint

    John Dineen, who started dating the TV star in 2013, passed away on Sunday at a hospital in his hometown of Cork, Ireland – two days before Dockery's birthday.

    He had reportedly been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, according to the Irish Independent.

    Dineen, who was a senior director at FTI Consulting in London, flew home to Ireland when he was diagnosed with the disease.

    He started dating the actress, who plays widow Lady Mary Crawley in the show, in September 2013 after being introduced by her co-star Allen Leech. The pair are believed to have got engaged in February this year.

    Dockery has rarely spoken of the relationship but last year she said: "I have a wonderful man in my life from Ireland. We were introduced by Allen Leech. That's all you need to know."

    In an interview with Red magazine last month she commented: "When Downton first became... just the enormity of it. I was so overwhelmed and found it hard to adjust to being recognised and having my private life in the spotlight. You quickly realise that the press can get to you. I've got people around me who I can turn to for advice: my mum, and my partner, John. But, at this stage, my instincts are pretty good."

    Matthew Stockman / Getty Images

    A spokesperson for Dockery has released this statement: "The family is very grateful for the support and kindness they have received but would kindly request that they are left to grieve in private."

    A private funeral will be taking place on Wednesday.

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