Naya Rivera has passed away. She was 33-years old. The former Glee actress had been missing since Wednesday, July 8th after she was last seen at Lake Piru with her 4-year old son. It is believed that she accidentally drowned. Rivera had rented a pontoon boat for her and her son, but when it was time to return the boat, she was nowhere to be found. Her son, Josey Hollis Dorsey, was found asleep on the boat wearing a life jacket, telling authorities that his mother never came back from the water.
Ventura County officials announced this morning that they had located a body, which was later identified as Naya Rivera. A press conference is expected for later today. At this time it is unclear where Rivera was found, but investigators did receive a clue when looking at a text that Rivera sent to family. They were able to find the cove where the image was taken and looked extensively in that area, along with the cabins along the lake, which they checked for a second time over the weekend.
Naya Rivera's friend and former Glee co-star, Heather Morris, offered her services to the Ventura County police department over the weekend. She wanted to help organize a small foot search around the lake to see if they could help out in any way. Lake Piru can get up to 137 feet deep and is known for having really low visibility, which did not help investigators as they searched for Rivera. In addition to the poor visibility, Lake Piru also has winds that can pick up, making the water choppy and pushing boats further away from initial swimming areas.
Naya Rivera was born in Santa Clarita, California, on January 12th, 1987, and raised in Valencia. She started modeling at a young age and moved down to Los Angeles. Between 1992 and 2002, Rivera appeared in several commercials and small sitcom roles, including The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Family Matters, Live Shot, Baywatch, Smart Guy, The Jersey, House Blend, Even Stevens, and The Master of Disguise. In 2009, she received her big break when she was cast as Santana Lopez, a high school cheerleader, on Fox's musical comedy series Glee.
She was added as a series regular in Glee season 2 and started to take on more screen time, where she showcased her voice, along with her acting chops. This led to a record deal with Columbia Records for a solo album. Rivera recorded her single, "Sorry," which featured rapper Big Sean, who she began dating and was ultimately briefly engaged to. In 2015, Rivera took on the role of Blanca Alvarez in the Lifetime's drama series Devious Maids.
She also wrote a memoir titled Sorry Not Sorry: Dreams, Mistakes, and Growing Up, which came out in 2016. In 2018, it was announced that the actress would be playing school administrator Collette Jones in the YouTube Red series Step Up: High Water. The show was later moved to the Starz network. TMZ was the first to report on the death of Naya Rivera.