(LOS ANGELES) — Celebrities have taken to social media to commemorate Naya Rivera in the wake of her tragic passing.
The actress, best known for her role as Santana Lopez on the musical dramedy Glee, was confirmed dead after she went missing while boating with her young son on Lake Piru in California on July 8. She was 33.
Since the announcement, Rivera’s former Glee costars, as well as friends and other celebrities have shared their condolences.
Demi Lovato: “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..”
Chris Colfer: “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.”
Jane Lynch: “Rest sweet, Naya. What a force you were. Love and peace to your family.”
Darren Criss: “She was bold. She was outrageous. She was a LOT of fun. Naya made me laugh like no one else on that set. I always said it while we were working together and I’ve maintained it ever since. Her playful, wicked sense of humor never ceased to bring a smile to my face. She played by her own rules and was in a class of her own. She had a brashness about her that I couldn’t help but be enchanted by. I also always loved her voice, and savored every chance I got to hear her sing. I think she had more talent than we would have ever been able to see. I was constantly moved by the degree to which she took care of her family, and how she looked out for her friends. She showed up for me on numerous occasions where she didn’t have to, and I was always so grateful for her friendship then, as I certainly am now. And even as I sit here, struggling to comprehend, gutted beyond description- the very thought of her cracks me up and still brings a smile to my face. That was Naya’s gift. And it’s a gift that will never go away. Rest in peace you wild, hilarious, beautiful angel.”
Kevin McHale: “My Naya, my Snixxx, my Bee. I legitimately can not imagine this world without you.
7 years ago today, she and I were together in London when we found out about Cory. We were so far away, but I was so thankful that we had each other. A week ago today we were talking about running away to Hawaii. This doesn’t make sense. And I know it probably never will.
She was so independent and strong and the idea of her not being here is something I cannot comprehend. She was the single most quick-witted person I’ve ever met, with a steel-trap memory that could recall the most forgettable conversations from a decade ago verbatim. The amount of times she would memorize all of those crazy monologues on Glee the morning of and would never ever mess up during the scene… I mean, she was clearly more talented than the rest of us. She was the most talented person I’ve ever known. There is nothing she couldn’t do and I’m furious we won’t get to see more.
I’m thankful for all the ways in which she made me a better person. She taught me how to advocate for myself and to speak up for the things and people that were important to me, always. I’m thankful for the times I grew an ab muscle from laughing so hard at something she said. I’m thankful she became like family. I’m thankful that my dad happened to have met her weeks before I did and when I got Glee, he told me to “look out for a girl named Naya because she seemed nice.” Well dad, she was nice and she became one of my favorite people ever.
If you were fortunate enough to have known her, you’ll know that her most natural talent of all was being a mother. The way that she loved her boy, it was truly Naya at her most peaceful. I’m thankful that Naya got that beautiful little boy got back on that boat. I’m thankful he will have a strong family around him to protect him and tell him about his incredible mom.
I just hope more than anything that her family is given the space and time to come to terms with this. For having such tiny body, Naya had such a gigantic presence, a void that will now be felt by all of us – those of us who knew her personally and the millions of you who loved her through your TVs. I love you, Bee.”
NeNe Leakes: “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.”
Kristin Chenoweth: “Thank you for what you gave the world. I love you.”
Becca Tobin: “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.”
Ricky Martin: “Beautiful memories boricua. RIP.”
Aly & AJ: “Praying for Naya Rivera, Kelly Preston & Benjamin Keough’s families right now. Please take a moment to think of them today.”
Becky G: “Beautiful Naya Rivera, Rest In Peace. My thoughts and prayers are with your loved ones. You will be missed & never forgotten.”
Bebe Rexha: “This is an absolute nightmare. I had the pleasure of having dinner with her once after a recording session we did together and she was an absolute sweetheart. My heart goes out to her family and friends. I hope I’m lucky enough to meet you up in heaven. Rest In Peace Naya Rivera.”
Khalid: “RIP Naya Rivera”
Ally Brooke: “It is so awful hearing about Naya Rivera. Just awful What a talent, and beauty – inside and out. I lift her family up in prayer, especially her son Josey. Such a very sad day May God be with her family. We love you Naya. Rest In Peace”
Mandy Moore: “This is absolutely heartbreaking. Sending love and holding space for her son and loved ones.”
Holly Robinson Peete: “Rest In Heaven, Naya Rivera. Sending so much prayer, love and courage to her family.”
Ross Mathews: “I only got to meet #NayaRivera a few times, but each time she looked me right in the eye, was fully present and laughed whole-heartedly. I adored her. I’m heartbroken for her family. Let’s all send them love.”
Jenna Dewan: “Fly with the angels Naya.”
Viola Davis: “Prayers for Naya Rivera’s family. Man….can we have a “Do Over ” of 2020. The loss is too much.”
Lili Reinhart: “It feels strange to cry and mourn the loss of someone you never knew. But I grew up watching Glee- and Naya Rivera was such a beautiful talent. My heart breaks for her son. Hold on tight to your people right now, if you’re lucky enough to be near them.”
Kehlani: “The reason songbird by Fleetwood Mac is one of my favorite songs ever is because of the glee soundtrack version. She transformed it. Rest Easy Naya Rivera. God cover and hold her loved ones!”
Hayley Kiyoko: “Absolutely devastating I’m so sorry for Naya’s family, her son, and friends … just awful”
Tamera Mowry-Housley: “Can’t believe I’m writing this. My heart. So many emotions. So many memories. My mind did not want to accept this. My sweet Naya. I love you. Will always love you. I’ll never forget your sweet smile, your amazing voice, and your warmth and love that has always welcomed me. I knew as early as 9 years old you were going to grace us with so much talent and so much beauty. I’m so grateful to have been blessed with your presence for over 20 years. You took my breath away and always will. Another angel has gained her wings. My heart goes out to the Rivera family.”
Tia Mowry: “My Naya! I became apart of your world through my brother @tahj_mowry. You guys used to hit the pavement auditioning together and booking jobs together. I’ve known your beautiful spirit since the age of 6. You quickly became family. Just some of my favorite memories- you helping my sister and myself look for a place to live when my parents kicked Tamera and I out of the house at 25. Us hitting L.A. night life together with @tahj_mowry and going to parities introducing me to the most wild drink I’ve ever had and you laughing at me because I couldn’t handle it. I will never forget asking you to shoot an episode of my cooking show Tia Mowry at Home and you saying yes without hesitation. Or us walking together to our cars on the paramount lot after a long hard day of work. We were both so stoked that we had television shows on the same lot. I love you. Your smile will always be the most beautiful smile. Rest my love. You are now a beautiful angel.”
Josh Gad: “Sick to my stomach. RIP #nayarivera.”
Alyssa Milano: “‘Butterflies can’t see their wings. They can’t see how truly beautiful they are, but everyone else can. People are like that as well.’ ~Naya Rivera Rest with the angels, Naya.”
Ashley Benson: “RIP sweet Naya.”
Danielle Fishel Karp: “My heart hurts for this beautiful boy and Ms. Rivera’s entire family. Seeing her sing this song I sing to my own son really hit me in the gut.”
Nick Bolton: “Naya and I were acquaintances at best, but I am heartbroken. My favorite memory will always be dancing with her at @HeatherMorrisTV’s wedding while she was pregnant with Josey. She was so happy. I know he was her world. Please pray for her family and friends. #RIPNayaRivera.”
Josh Sussman: “Naya, you will be missed so much.”
Janel Parrish: “Rest In Peace and power, Naya.”
By Danielle Long
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