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'Glee' Cast Says Goodbye To Naya Rivera

By Kristy Puchko | Celebrity | July 14, 2020 |

By Kristy Puchko | Celebrity | July 14, 2020 |


Naya-Rivera-1175833318.jpg

Yesterday afternoon, Ventura County Sheriff’s Department confirmed the death of Glee star Naya Rivera, who was last seen on a pontoon boat with her 4-year-old son in California’s Lake Piru. She’d been missing since July 8, when her four-year-old son was found sleeping in the rented boat. Following the news of her tragic passing, Glee co-stars, recurring performers, and guest stars took to social media to remember the actress for her talent, light, and love.

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How can you convey all your love and respect for someone in one post? How can you summarize a decade of friendship and laughter with words alone? If you were friends with Naya Rivera, you simply can’t. Her brilliance and humor were unmatched. Her beauty and talent were otherworldly. She spoke truth to power with poise and fearlessness. She could turn a bad day into a great day with a single remark. She inspired and uplifted people without even trying. Being close to her was both a badge of honor and a suit of armor. Naya was truly one of a kind, and she always will be. 💔 Sending all my love to her wonderful family and her beautiful son.

A post shared by Chris Colfer (@chriscolfer) on

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Grieving together.

A post shared by VANESSA LENGIES (@littlelengies) on

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Naya was insanely talented, breathtakingly gorgeous, and one of the wittiest people I’ve ever met, but the legacy she left behind for me is her kindness. I joined the cast of Glee in the third season and as the newcomer, I was intimidated and terrified. The cast was already such a tight-knit group who had been working incredibly hard together for over three years to make it a hit show and I never expected any of them to have time for me. To my surprise, Naya, one of the most beloved by the rest of the cast (and the entire world), showed me instant warmth and kindness. She invited me to parties and gatherings and was always there to give advice. She was a superstar who had nothing to gain from being kind to the new girl, but she was and that changed this new girl’s entire experience on that show. I will forever be grateful to that beautiful human. My heart goes out to her family and her sweet boy. ❤️

A post shared by Becca Tobin (@becca) on

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My favorite duet partner. I love you. I miss you. I don’t have words right now, just lots of feelings. Rest In Peace Angel, and know that your family will never have to worry about anything.

A post shared by Amber Riley (@msamberpriley) on

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My heart is broken.. I truly had soo much fun filming this little segment… we both clearly didn’t wanna be there but made the most of it! Naya was truly a star.. one day as I was coming out of hair and make up I saw her sitting at base camp and she said “Alex… when you go on tour can you please say ‘everybody say heeeyy Ms. Newell” just for me!” I said absolutely we laughed and had a short little convo about life and music.. I’ll cherish that moment for ever!! I watched her preform with such power, brilliance, and honesty.. While being a light as a person! The love she had for her family and friends was always clear! She will truly be missed! Josey you are loved by all the people who love your mother! My thoughts and prayers are with her family! Rest Sweet Angel..

A post shared by Alex Newell (@thealexnewell) on

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There are no words and yet so many things I want to say, I don't believe I'll ever be able to articulate exactly what I feel but… Naya, you were a ⚡️ force and everyone who got to be around you knew it and felt the light and joy you exuded when you walked into a room. You shined on stage and screen and radiated with love behind closed doors. I was lucky enough to share so many laughs, martinis and secrets with you. I can not believe I took for granted that you'd always be here. Our friendship went in waves as life happens and we grow, so I will not look back and regret but know I love you and promise to help the legacy of your talent, humor, light and loyalty live on. You are so loved. You deserved the world and we will make sure Josey and your family feel that everyday. I miss you already.

A post shared by Jenna Ushkowitz (@jennaushkowitz) on

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A post shared by Harry Shum Jr (@harryshumjr) on

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Cheerios Forever

A post shared by Lauren Potter (@thelaurenpotter) on

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She has not left my mind this last week. It’s difficult to find words. There was an undeniable beauty that she radiated inside and out, and I consider myself incredibly lucky that I got to witness that up close even for the short period of time that I did. I was so intimidated by her, yet she had a way of disarming that just made you want to be around her, hear what she had to say (because it would undoubtedly be the sharpest and most real thing you would hear all day). She was kind and open to me when she didn’t have to be, when I was a naive, clueless and insecure newcomer. Bravely authentic, genuinely kind, incredibly talented and deeply loved by so many. Thinking of her family and loved ones. Rest In Peace, Naya.

A post shared by Melissa Benoist (@melissabenoist) on

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This is so sad, she was so talented and beautiful, she could be super intimidating and approachable all at the same time. Watching her perform was absolutely electric, and I’m just very sad and very thankful that I got to share some scenes with you. My thoughts and prayers are with your family, Rest In Peace❤️

A post shared by Samuel Larsen (@samuellarsen) on

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SWIPE: I was praying for a miracle! I wanted you to come home to your baby so bad. This hurts! I will hold the memories close to my heart and remember the good times, the laughs and the way we would cut up on set. Those were fun times! Please pray for Naya’s family🙏🏾ripnayarivera #lifeisshort #bigsis

A post shared by Nene Leakes (@neneleakes) on

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Thank you for what you gave the world. I love you.

A post shared by Kristin Chenoweth (@kchenoweth) on

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RIP Naya.

A post shared by ADAM LAMBERT (@adamlambert) on

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RIP Naya Rivera. I’ll forever cherish the opportunity to play your girlfriend on Glee. The character you played was groundbreaking for tons of closeted queer girls (like me at the time) and open queer girls, and your ambition and accomplishments were inspiring to Latina women all over the world. My heart goes out to your loved ones at this time.. ❤️🕊

A post shared by Demi Lovato (@ddlovato) on

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I had the honor of working with @nayarivera who’s talent blew me away. Heartbroken to hear the news of her passing. Sending thoughts and prayers to her family, close friends, and loyal fans. Naya- you will be missed, but never forgotten.

A post shared by Peter Facinelli (@peterfacinelli) on

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How I’ll always remember you. Bright. Beautiful. Funny. You were so kind to me and I watched you be just wonderful with people. A life cut way too short. #RIPNaya

A post shared by ᴄʜᴇʏᴇɴɴᴇ ᴊᴀᴄᴋsᴏɴ (@mrcheyennejackson) on

Kevin McHale commented on how Rivera’s body was recovered 7 years to the day of the death of cast member Cory Monteith.

Lea Michelle remembered both Monteith and Rivera in an Instagram story, screenshotted below:

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Gleeks have turned to a post from Rivera herself to speak both to the tragedy of her death and the joy she brought in life.

Finally, this is her last tweet, a picture of Rivera and her son, posted the day before the boat trip.


Kristy Puchko is the managing editor of Pajiba. You can follow her on Twitter.


Header Image Source: Getty


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