The Backstreet Boys member took to social media on Sunday to share a heartbreaking tribute to his younger brother.
“My heart has been broken today,” Carter captioned a series of photos on Instagram. “Even though my brother and I have had a complicated relationship, my love for him has never ever faded. I have always held onto the hope, that he would somehow, someday want to walk a healthy path and eventually find the help that he so desperately needed.”
The post continued, “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 get a chance to finally have some peace you could never find here on earth….God, please take care of my baby brother.”
Hours after the news broke on Saturday, Hilary Duff hopped on Instagram to share an emotional tribute to Carter, who in 2001 appeared on an episode of Duff’s Disney Channel show Lizzie McGuire.
“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,” she wrote. “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.”
Aaron passed away Saturday inside his Lancaster, California home. Law enforcement responded to a call around 11 a.m. that a male had drowned in the bathtub. No foul play is suspected, and an official cause of death is unknown.
Back in September, police were summoned to Aaron Carter’s home to do a welfare check after it appeared the singer was doing drugs during an Instagram Live session. Police told TMZ at the time that they had received a call about Carter “possibly overdosing on social media.”