Naya Rivera loved being a mother. Her son, Josey was her biggest priority.
The strength and courage that a mother will muster up for her child is like no other. When her child is in danger, she will do everything she can even if it means causing herself harm. Glee actress Naya Rivera is such a mother. Reports say that she may have given up her life trying to help her little son from drowning.
The actress was reported missing on 8 July 2020 after she went boating with her 4-year-old son Josey at Lake Piru in California. Mother and son were swimming in the lake but only one of them made it back on the boat alive. Her son, who was found on the boat alone told officers that his mother did not get on the boat. Days after going missing, on 13 July 2020, her body was found.
Robert Inglis of the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office Search & Rescue Team told the media that a photo was sent to a family member showing the little child by a cove.
"There was a picture sent to a family member that showed the boy on the boat by a cove. We found where that cove was," said Inglis, according to US Weekly.
Previously, the officer had made some speculations regarding the case. He said, "What I suspect is that the winds kicked up. Those pontoon boats are very light, and when you push them, it can get away from you. She might've tried to swim after the boat. But that's all speculation. Once we do locate her, that'll answer a lot more questions," according to the Daily Mail.
However, it has come to light that the mother lost her life while trying to save her son. "She mustered enough energy to get her son back onto the boat, but not enough to save herself," said Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub, according to CNN.
When he was rescued, the 4-year-old was found alone on the lake. When asked about his mother, he told investigators that he saw her disappear into the water. The boy was found wearing a life jacket while another life jacket was found on the boat.
Following the statement from the boy, the investigators along with the actress's family joined the search. Heartbreaking photos from the search showed that her family including father George and ex-husband, Ryan Dorsey, joined the search. They swam across the lake looking for the actress.
Those who knew the actress had nothing but great things to say about the talented woman and fierce mother. She loved her son dearly and spent a lot of time with him. Amber Riley, a friend and colleague of the actress wrote, "My favorite duet partner. I love you. I miss you. I don’t have words right now, just lots of feelings," on Instagram. She shared a video of the Rivera and her son singing together.
Undoubtedly, the mother and son were very close. Even the last Instagram post shared by the mother depicted it. On the post, Rivera wrote, "Just the two of us."
Besides, Rivera has been vocal about the importance of motherhood in her life. Speaking to ET in 2016, the actress stated, "I'm a mom now, and what I love more than acting is being Josey's mom. So, I want to be here for him. And I don't want to miss anything," she said at the time. "I'm going to navigate the right way to do that.
The loving mother also stated that he was amazed by her son's appreciation and love for the things she does for him. "The love I get from him. Little things like the two kisses he stood up and gave me last night to say thank you for making him mac and cheese from scratch. It’s a love never found anywhere or with anyone else," said the mother.
Recently, the actress stated that her son wants to become an actor too. "He told me the other day because we were watching a song from Glee -- he had never really seen it -- and he goes, ‘Why I aren’t I on the TV?’” the actress mused. “I’m like, ‘You weren’t born yet!’ And he’s like, ‘But I wanna be on TV,’ and I was like, ‘Dun, dun, dun!’ … He’s like, ‘OK, I want to do that too.'"
She added, "He loves to sing, he loves music, he loves to dance and he’s really, really funny," said the mother to US Weekly, in 2019. Rivera shared an incredible bond with her little one. She was someone, who wanted to be there for him at every step in his life. When he celebrated his 4th birthday last year, she said, "I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, as long as I'm living, my baby you'll be."
Though she is no longer around, Rivera showered her boy with love and affection. While he may always miss her physical presence, he will surely cherish the sacrifices she made for him and the unconditional love she showed him.