Actress Naya Rivera, 33, was found dead in Lake Piru on Monday after a search that was launched last week by Ventura County authorities. Rivera had went missing with her son on July 8th which prompted the search for her. Her 4 year old son, Josey, was found sleeping in a boat days before her body was later found. Officials have completed an autopsy,s confirming reports that she died by drowning with no signs of drugs or alcohol in her system.
“There is no indication from the investigation or examination that drugs or alcohol played a role in the decedent’s death, but specimens will be submitted for toxicology testing," said a Ventura county police official.
Throughout her 30 years in the industry, Rivera is most known for her role as Santana Lopez on "Glee". But, she has had many roles since her childhood. She has appeared in many TV shows and films through the years. Some being, "Family Matters" , "The Royal Family", "Soul Food", "The Bernie Mac Show", "Even Stevens", and "Girlfriends."
Santana Lopez was a cheerleader who struggled with her sexuality until later being outed as a lesbian down the line. However, viewers got to see Santana eventually embrace her sexuality and get married to Brittany Pierce (played by Heather Morris).
This couple made fans of Glee nickname the relationship of the two characters as 'Brittana'. With Glee airing before same-sex marriage was legal in the US many people saw this moment as a hope for the future, which became true.
Rivera had become an icon in the LGBTQ+ community, being that beacon of light despite due to minimal LGBT representation on TV. n but getting to see Santana on Glee fulfilled that purpose with much more to come after her.
Many celebrities took to social media to share their thoughts on Rivera's sudden transition. Actor Dyllon Burnside from "Pose" tweeted about her passing being "completely heartbreaking."
Actor and LGBT activist Wilson Cruz also tweeted condolences out to her family as well.
Her co-stars from Glee also came together to remember her at Lake Piru.
Our condolences go out to her friends and family. May Naya forever rest in peace.