He was the small screen icon of the Seventies. A TV star with The Partridge Family and sold well over a million records, playing to sell-out stadiums around the world. His global success brought him fame, fortune and a $1.9 million mansion in Florida. But a string of bad investments along with an alleged loss of royalties from The Partridge Family, led to him being declared virtually bankrupt. Forcing him to sell his Fort Lauderdale mansion.

Now it's been reported that David Cassidy, having battled alcohol and drug problems over the years, has developed dementia.

A condition which, sadly, appears to have run in his family - his mother, Evelyn Ward, herself a former actress, died from it in 2012. A chapter in his life which he found very difficult to come to terms with. His condition became apparent during a concert last month in California, where his erratic and almost nonsensical performance drew gasps of disbelief from the crowd.

Private heartbreak in the public glare

But as with all stars who live their lives in the spotlight, his private heartbreak, broken marriages and addiction problems have, inevitably, been played out in the public glare. Deep down he almost knew history might repeat itself, though this week, David, now 66, did admit to being in denial.

Unfortunately for fans around the world, his illness has prevented any further concert tours. A fact which will, no doubt, impose further strain on his finances.

Superstardom is no shield

Even though he appears to have shared the same almost self-destructive streak as his father, Jack Cassidy, let's not forget that David was, very much, a seventies superstar.

He released five solo albums and 26 singles, and his phenominal global success gave rise to the term "Cassidymania". But perhaps the most poignant way of summing up his career was written on his website last month: "To know you love and care for me means everything in the world......I promise I won't disappear." But sometimes even superstardom is no shield against illness.