DWTS's Carrie Ann Inaba Mourns Aaron Carter: "He Had a Very Special and Tender Heart"
In the wake of Aaron Carter's death on Nov. 5, the singer's family, friends, and former costars and collaborators have been paying their respects to the pop star. Carter, who was 34, was best known for his pop albums "Aaron Carter," released in 1997, and "Aaron's Party (Come and Get It)," which went triple platinum in 2000. As the younger brother of Backstreet Boys member Nick Carter, the "Candy" singer began touring with the boy band when he was just 9. From there, his career went on to include guest appearances on shows like "Lizzie McGuire" and "Sabrina the Teenage Witch," making him a household name among tweens in the early '00s.
After his fame at an early age, Carter went on to deal with substance abuse and mental health issues. These issues ultimately left him estranged from Nick, who filed a restraining order against his younger brother in 2019. Earlier this year, the 34-year-old checked himself into rehab in hopes of regaining custody of his almost 1-year-old son, Prince, whom he shared with Melanie Martin, per his September interview with The Sun.
In a tribute to his little brother after Carter's death, Nick made note of the issues Carter faced as well as their estrangement. "Even though my brother and I have had a complicated relationship, my love for him has never ever faded," he wrote on Instagram. "I have always held on to the hope that he would somehow, someday want to walk a healthy path and eventually find the help that he so desperately needed." Nick also paid tribute to his late brother with the Backstreet Boys during their London concert on Nov. 6.
Read on to see how Carter's family and friends are honoring his memory.
"My heart is broken. Even though my brother and I have had a complicated relationship, my love for him has never ever faded," Nick wrote on Instagram alongside a collection of photos featuring him and his little brother. "I have always held on to the hope that he would somehow, someday want to walk a healthy path and eventually find the help that he so desperately needed. Sometimes we want to blame someone or something for a loss, but the truth is that addiction and mental illness is the real villain here. I will miss my brother more than anyone will ever know. I love you Chizz. Now you can finally have the peace you could never find here on earth. . . . I love you baby brother."
During the band's London concert on Nov. 6, the Backstreet Boys took a moment to remember Nick Carter's late brother. "Tonight we got a little bit of heavy hearts because we lost one of our family members yesterday," Kevin Richardson told the crowd. "We just wanted to find a moment in our show to recognize him. Nick's little brother, Aaron Carter, passed away yesterday at 34 years old."
The following day, the band shared a photo with Aaron on their Instagram.
"My heart goes out to his family and may he rest in peace," Lohan, who dated in the early 2000s, told Entertainment Tonight on Nov. 7. "And God bless him . . . and yeah, just [a] lot of love there."
"For Aaron– I'm deeply sorry that life was so hard for you and that you had to struggle in-front of the whole world," Duff wrote on Instagram. "You had a charm that was absolutely effervescent . . . boy did my teenage self love you deeply. Sending love to your family at this time. Rest easy."
Carter's twin sister, Angel, shared a selection of photos from their childhood with her followers on Instagram. "To my twin . . . I loved you beyond measure," she captioned her post. "You will be missed dearly. My funny, sweet Aaron,I have so many memories of you and I, and I promise to cherish them. I know you're at peace now. I will carry you with me until the day I die and get to see you again. 💔"
The band collectively tweeted, "We are saddened by the news of the sudden passing of Aaron Carter today. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and fans during this difficult time. Rest In Peace Aaron #gonetosoon."
New Kids on the Block
"We are shocked and saddened about the sudden passing of Aaron Carter. Sending prayers to the Carter family. Rest in peace, Aaron ❤️," the New Kids on the Block tweeted from their official account.
"Sad to hear about the news of @aaroncarter😢," Hilton tweeted. "He was always kind to my family and I. He had a good heart. Gone way too soon. 😔Sending my thoughts and condolences to his loved ones and family. RIP 🙏."
Melissa Joan Hart
"Sending love to the family and friends and fans of #AaronCarter. Rest In Peace!" Hart captioned a throwback photo of herself with Carter on Instagram.
Christy Carlson Romano
Romano tweeted, "Incredibly sad about the passing of Aaron Carter. My thoughts and prayers go out to his friends and family. 🕯️"
"No. . . . This @aaroncarter news is heartbreaking . . ." Hilton tweeted. "This kid had such a spark. Known him for years and always really liked him, he was warm and really funny. Loved putting on a show and he was good at it. Ill find some pics of us and post more later . . . damn RIP budddd #aaroncarter."
Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi
The "Jersey Shore" star tweeted simply, "RIP Aaron Carter 😞 🙏🏽."
Lou Diamond Phillips
"So very sad to hear about the untimely passing of #Aaroncarter. I did not know him well but in our short time together on RachaelVsGuy, I saw him as a sweet, good-hearted young man. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and fans. #RIPAaronCarter," Phillips tweeted.
"I worked with Aaron Carter on 7th Heaven," Knudsen tweeted. "Although he was young and famous, he took the work very seriously and was nice to everyone. Prayers up for his family and loved ones. Damn. #RIPAaronCarter."
O-Town member Underwood tweeted, "Rest In Peace @aaroncarter I'm sorry we couldn't help you in time. It was a pleasure to tour with that man and witness his talent night after night, and I hold the memories of our conversations close in mind. Praying for the Carter family. He was far too young."
"RIP sweet boy," Martyr tweeted. "You'll always hold a special place in my heart. I can't even believe this💔😭 You were one of the few people who never judged me & was always so supportive. My heart is broken hearing this news, I wish I had a chance to say goodbye. Rest In Peace Aaron."
"Met Aaron Carter in 2018, funny, talented and cool. I felt that he was trying. . . . he really was just trying to be happy. I'm sorry to hear of his passing.. Condolences to his family and fans 💔," Love tweeted alongside a photo of Carter on "The Real."
Warren tweeted, "Fame at a young age is often more a curse than a blessing and Surviving it is not easy. RIP Aaron Carter🎤💔."
"Feel terrible about Aaron Carter passing away," "The Circle" star tweeted. "He always seemed like such a tortured soul. He just had his son. Now a boy is without a father and this man passed on far to young. Just a terrible tragedy of a day. RIP Aaron."
"Rest in peace Aaron Carter," Scarlette tweeted. "I am in tears right now hearing of your death. I just talked to you on Wednesday & you seemed in good spirits. You were such a sweet soul that never had a chance. I'm heartbroken that your son, who you wanted so much will never get to know you. 💔"
Carrie Ann Inaba
"Dancing With the Stars" judge Carrie Ann Inaba teared up over Carter's death (the singer Carter appeared on the show in 2009) during a Nov. 8 interview with Extra TV. "I think of Aaron a lot. I always have," she said. "He was one of those contestants that you always hoped for. When he came here on our show, he had so much joy and enthusiasm . . . It's tragic what happened to him." Inaba continued: "My heart goes out to his family and Nick and all those he left behind, because I know he had a very special and tender heart. I think maybe the world, it was just too difficult for him. A lot of people are dealing with mental illness in this world right now, and I don't know exactly what happened, but he's been open with his struggles . . . It just breaks my heart that somebody that sweet left us so soon."