Former Glee co-stars and figures from across entertainment are mourning "wild, hilarious, beautiful angel" Naya Rivera after her death was confirmed at the age of 33.
The actress went missing last week during a boating trip at Lake Piru in Southern California with her four-year-old son, Josey Hollis Dorsey.
Shortly after the news was announced, there was a flood of tributes to Naya, who was best known for playing high school cheerleader Santana Lopez on Glee. Her co-stars on the musical-comedy series were among those paying tribute.
Lea Michele played Rachel Berry and posted a black and white picture of Naya to her Instagram Story, as well as an image of Glee cast members at a beach.
Fans were waiting for Lea to share any messages about Naya with reports the two didn’t get along while working together. Lea also deleted her Twitter after getting trolled by fans about Naya.
However, the pair appeared to be on good terms with Naya commenting on Lea’s pregnancy announcement, "Aww congrats! I love this. You're going to be a great mommy."
Demi Lovato, who played Naya’s on-screen girlfriend on the show, said she would “forever cherish” starring alongside her.
The singer posted pictures of the pair on set together and said, “The character you played was groundbreaking for tons of closeted (at the time) queer girls like me, 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.”
Darren Criss played Blaine Anderson on Glee and paid tribute to a “wild, hilarious, beautiful angel”.
“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 savoured every chance I got to hear her sing. I think she had more talent than we would have ever been able to see,” he tweeted.
Jane Lynch, who played ruthless cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester, tweeted: “Rest sweet, Naya. What a force you were. Love and peace to your family.”
Rest sweet, Naya. What a force you were. Love and peace to your family.— Jane Lynch (@janemarielynch) July 13, 2020
Chris Colfer, who played Kurt Hummel, shared a lengthy tribute on Instagram, celebrating his more than 10-year friendship with Naya.
“Her brilliance and humour 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,” he wrote.
Kevin McHale shared a tribute, acknowledging the fact Naya's body was found on the seventh anniversary of Cory Montieth's death.
"I'm not religious by any means, but you'd be hard-pressed to convince me that Cory didn't help find our girl today. These 2, in many ways, were the male and female versions of one another. So nice, cared deeply, were stupidly talented, the most fun, and really really good people," he wrote.
I'm not religious by any means, but you'd be hard-pressed to convince me that Cory didn't help find our girl today. These 2, in many ways, were the male and female versions of one another. So nice, cared deeply, were stupidly talented, the most fun, and really really good people. https://t.co/qsvThOJxL7— Kevin McHale (@druidDUDE) July 14, 2020
Jenna Ushkowitz added, "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 [lightning] 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."
Amber Riley, who was at Lake Piru with Naya's friends and family while authorities searched for her body, shared a sweet video of Naya and Josey singing.
She wrote, "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."
Figures from across the entertainment industry also paid tribute to Naya.
Steven Canals is the co-creator of TV series Pose, which is set in the ballroom culture scene of the 1980s. He praised Naya’s portrayal of Santana, an LGBT character.
I'll never be able to articulate the importance of seeing Naya, a Black Puerto Rican, portraying a queer Afro-Latina on primetime TV. I'm heartbroken over all the stories that will remain untold. #RIPNayaRivera pic.twitter.com/UGq2rDwWay— Steven Canals (@StevenCanals) July 13, 2020
“I’ll never be able to articulate the importance of seeing Naya, a Black Puerto Rican, portraying a queer Afro-Latina on primetime TV. I’m heartbroken over all the stories that will remain untold,” he said.
Pop star Bebe Rexha described Naya’s death as an “absolute nightmare”.
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— Bebe Rexha (@BebeRexha) July 13, 2020
“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,” she tweeted.
Additional reporting by AAP.