Naya Rivera's Ex-Fiancé, Big Sean, Pays Tribute to Her: 'You Are a Hero'

Hilary Weaver
Photo credit: Jason LaVeris - Getty Images
Photo credit: Jason LaVeris - Getty Images

From ELLE

The Ventura County Sheriff's Department confirmed on Monday that they had recovered Naya Rivera's body from Lake Piru, and on Tuesday the Ventura County Medical Examiner confirmed that drowning was the cause of her death. Since then, friends, family, and co-stars have published touching tributes to the late 33-year-old.

Big Sean, to whom Rivera became engaged for about six months between October 2013 and April 2014, was one of those people.

This weekend, the rapper shared two photos of Rivera—one of her in black and white and another of her cuddling her son, Josey Dorsey (4).

"Rest In Peace Naya, God Bless your Soul!," he wrote. "Thank you for blessing us all with your talent and presence. you are a hero! Not just because of how you saved your son, also because of the barriers you knocked down for so many people to make them feel confident in themselves and to stand tall and be proud when they couldn’t achieve that on their own. I appreciate and cherish everything that ever happened between us for making me wiser and a better person. I’m still grieving and in shock, I can’t believe this is real. I’m praying for you and your family and I know your watching over them and protecting them. Rest In Peace Naya 💙🙏🏾."

Rivera's Glee co-star and close friend, Heather Morris—who played Rivera's love interest and wife on the show—asked to be part of the Ventura County Sheriff Department's search. After the team found Rivera, Morris posted the following message about her friend, along with some photos of their children playing.

"You constantly taught me lessons about grief, about beauty and poise, about being strong, resilient and about not giving a fuck (but still somehow respectful)," she wrote, in part. "Yet, the utmost important lesson I learned most of all from you was being a consistent and loving friend. You were the first to check in, the first to ask questions, the first to listen..you cherished our friendship and I never took that for granted. "

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We started out as the closest friends and then like all new things, we went through a bit of a rocky phase. However, we stuck by each other’s side and created the most beautiful friendship built out of love and understanding. The last I had the chance to see you in person, I had left oranges outside our home for you to take. I wanted to say hi through the window but my phone didn’t ring when you called (which it never does, f*cking T-Mobile), so instead you and Josey left two succulents on our doorstep as a thank you. I planted those succulents and I look at them everyday and think of you. I still listen to your EP on repeat because from the moment I heard it, it struck me and I always wished the world knew more of your voice. You sent me over 5 dozen SnapChat videos when you and Josey woke up in the morning and I kick myself that I didn’t save one of them. You always shared recipes and I admired your love for food. We vowed to spend every Easter together, even though Covid stole this last one from us. You are and always will be the strongest and most resilient human being I know, and I vowed to carry that with me as I continue to live my life. You constantly taught me lessons about grief, about beauty and poise, about being strong, resilient and about not giving a fuck (but still somehow respectful ). Yet, the utmost important lesson I learned most of all from you was being a consistent and loving friend. You were the first to check in, the first to ask questions, the first to listen..you cherished our friendship and I never took that for granted. We never took photos together because we mutually hated taking pictures...our relationship meant more than proof. I have countless pictures of our babies playing, because we shared that kind of pride and joy. So I’m showing the world a photo of our little goof balls for you, because I know that meant more than anything and they remind me of you and I. I speak to you everyday because I know you’re still with me and even though I’m feeling greedy that we don’t get more time together, I cherish every moment we had and hold it close to my heart.

A post shared by Heather Morris (@heatherrelizabethh) on Jul 15, 2020 at 2:03pm PDT

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