Glee Star Naya Rivera Missing, Presumed Drowned, After Boat Ride (UPDATE)

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A tragedy appears to be unfolding as authorities in Ventura County California call off their search for the night for Glee star Naya Rivera. Her four year old son Josey was found alone in a rented boat on Lake Piru Wednesday afternoon (July 8).

According to Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, Naya reportedly rented a boat at 1 p.m. on Wednesday. Three hours later, another boater found her son in a boat by himself wearing a life vest. Sheriff’s officials launched a search using helicopters, drones and dive teams on Wednesday afternoon.

According to TMZ, it was her son who told police that Naya had jumped in the water and not come back up. Her life jacket was reportedly still in the boat and Josey asleep when he was found. Her vehicle was found in the parking lot with her purse inside.

At 10:39 pm, the Ventura County Sheriff’s twitter wrote that the “missing person at Lake Piru has been identified as Naya Rivera, 33, of Los Angeles. SAR operation will continue at first light.”  An earlier tweet noted that she was a “possible drowning victim.”

The actress’ son, whose father is Ryan Dorsey, is reported to be unharmed. Naya Rivera played cheerleader Santana on the FOX musical comedy Glee from 2009-2014. In the course of the series, the character came out as gay and eventually married her best friend Brittany, played by Heather Morris.

Naya Rivera presumed dead, search is now a recovery mission

UPDATE: According to TMZ, Naya is presumed dead and the search has now shifted from a rescue to a recovery mission. She went missing in water with only 5 to 9 inches of visibility, and authorities say the lake is filled with trees and debris on the bottom. Law enforcement says it typically takes 7 to 10 days for a body to rise to the surface.

More than 80 people are currently involved in the search, which is utilizing helicopters, boats, ATV vehicles and ground personnel to try to locate Naya … according to the Ventura County Sheriff. Specialized dive teams from surrounding counties are also en route to help.

On Tuesday, Naya posted a photo of her kissing Josey with the caption “Just the two of us.”


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Founder and editor of, home of the awesomest fan community on the net. I love cheesy singing shows of all kinds, whether reality or scripted. I adore American Idol, but also love The Voice, Glee, X Factor and more!