Dianna Agron said she's spent the last few days "revisiting" some of Naya Rivera's most memorable performances

By Jodi Guglielmi
July 14, 2020 01:49 PM
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Dianna Agron is remembering her "first friend and ally," Naya Rivera.

On Monday, authorities found the body of Rivera, 33, who had gone missing during a boat outing with her 4-year-old son, Josey, at Lake Piru in Ventura County, California, last week. The discovery came on the seventh anniversary of fellow Glee star Cory Monteith's death.

After learning the news of her death, Agron, who starred as Quinn Fabray on Glee, joined the long list of friends and costars who paid tribute to the star on social media.

"Naya and I fell into stride with such ease, she was my first friend and ally on our show. In the pilot, our characters came and went with such swiftness. Our enthusiasm brimmed with all of the unknown," she wrote. "We tried to grasp what the other cast members must be feeling as we were working in such separate manners. We dared to dream. What if this show worked? Wouldn’t that be something? Something was brimming, it was palpable. And thank god it worked. Naya’s magnetic talent was going to be unleashed, we just didn’t know it yet."

Credit: Michael Buckner/Getty

Agron, 34, said she's spent the last few days watching some of Rivera's most memorable performances on the show and reflecting on the "gift" it was to work with her.

"I’ve been revisiting Naya’s performances on our show and it has brought me great joy. To work with her was a gift. There was a great deal to absorb - her work ethic, her fearlessness, her talent - supreme. Naya had a laugh that would envelop you and hold you captive," she wrote. "She was mesmerizing. That twinkle in her eye, her luminous smile. Naya lead with truth, humor, wit. I loved her for all of these reasons."

Along with the message, she shared a sweet photo of herself and Rivera playfully touching noses while wearing matching costumes.

She continued: "I cannot make sense of this tremendous loss. I will hold onto her and these memories for the rest of time, alongside our Glee family. Please hold space for her, her family, her beautiful boy."

"In absolute, loving memory," she concluded.

Authorities said Monday that they believe Rivera died saving Josey.

"We know from speaking with her son, that he and Naya swam in the lake together at some point during their journey," Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub said at a news conference. "It was during that time that her son described being helped into the boat by Naya, who boosted him onto the deck from behind. He told investigators that he looked back and saw her disappear under the surface of the water."

"The idea perhaps being that the boat started drifting, it was unanchored, and that she mustered enough energy to get her son back onto the boat, but not enough to save herself," Ayub said.

The discovery came on the seventh anniversary of  Glee star Cory Monteith's death due to a “mixed drug toxicity” of heroin and alcohol. He was 31.

"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," Kevin McHale, who played Artie Abrams on Glee, wrote on Twitter. "So nice, cared deeply, were stupidly talented, the most fun, and really really good people."