Naya Rivera’s mother opens up about ‘heavy sorrow’ one year after Glee star’s death

‘There are no words to describe what we’re going through,’ says Rivera’s mother Yolanda Previtire

Clémence Michallon
New York City
Thursday 08 July 2021 16:31

Related: Glee cast pay tribute to Naya Rivera at GLAAD Media Awards

Naya Rivera’s family has honoured her memory, one year after her death.

The Glee actor’s mother, sister, and brother all spoke to Good Morning America, either in person or via a statement, to discuss her life and legacy during Thursday’s broadcast.

Rivera went missing on 8 July 2020 during an outing on Lake Piru, California. Her body was found days later, and her death was ruled an accidental drowning.

“Sometimes we're afraid of the sorrow being so heavy that we're afraid for our own self, ‘cause this is hard,” Rivera’s mother Yolanda Previtire told Good Morning America. “There are no words to describe what we're going through. All we know is we have each other.”

Previtire said the family have kept discussing Rivera around Josey, her young son who was with her on the day of her disappearance. Josey, who was four at the time, was found safe and wearing a life jacket.

Now about to turn six, Josey “misses his mom”, Previtire said, and “recalls their life together”.

“It’s almost like we're feeding off each other and lifting each other up. Josey has lifted me up so many times,” Previtire said. “He’s comforting that way, and we do the same for him.”

Rivera’s sister Nickayla Rivera said the family have been taking things “one day at a time” and living “it to the fullest, loving each other to the fullest, and not regretting anything. Because I know if we could go back, we’d hug a little bit harder.”

The actor’s brother Mychal Rivera told the network in a statement: “One year without you, one year closer to when we will meet you again. Your endless energy lives on. May you continue to rest so graciously, Naya.”