Stephen Gately (c) Ronan Keating Instagram

Stephen Gately (c) Ronan Keating Instagram

Ronan Keating has paid tribute to his late Boyzone bandmate Stephen Gately on the seventh anniversary of his death.

The 39-year-old singer/songwriter took to his Instagram account on Monday (10.10.16) to remember his dear friend who died from a congenital heart defect at the age of just 33.

Alongside a heart-warming photo of Stephen, Ronan quoted a line from 1997 Disney film 'Hercules', posting: "Hey Steo. 'A true hero isn't measured by the size of his strength, but by the strength of his heart.' - Zeus (Disney'sHercules) #ShootingStar. Miss ya Bro (sic)."

And fellow Boyzone singer Mikey Graham has also taken to social media to pay tribute to Stephen.

Despite having joined Twitter five years ago, Mikey wrote his first tweet, which he dedicated to the 'Every Day I Love You More' hitmaker.

Mikey tweeted: "Still missing you steo. Rip pal. (sic)."

The death of Stephen hit all the members of Boyzone and their manager Louis Walsh hard.

The band members - Ronan, Mikey, Keith Duffy and Shane Lynch - proved their dedication to the late singer when they held an overnight vigil in the Church of St Laurence O'Toole in Dublin, Ireland, the night before his funeral took place because Stephen had been afraid of the dark and they didn't want him to be left alone.

Speaking previously about their actions prior to the memorial service in 2009, Shane said: "We got our sleeping bags, the priest came in with some wine for us and at about 12 o'clock at night we were starving hungry. We didn't think of food but then there was a knock on the church door and no word of a lie, but in came Daniel O'Donnell with a load of fish and chips.

"We sat and ate and laughed and joked and just told amazing stories, about Steo. It was an amazing thing to do, a magical thing to do.

"We saw him off with joy and not sorrow."