It’s been almost one year since the unexpected and tragic passing of actress Naya Rivera.
The world was stunned when news of her disappearance made headlines on July 8, 2020.
Naya was later pronounced dead on July 13, 2020, five days after she was reported missing.
The former “Glee” star was out boating on Lake Piru in California with her son, Josey, when she went to take a swim in the water.
Unfortunately, things went horribly wrong and Naya drowned after getting her son to safety. Her death was ruled an accidental drowning.
In a new interview with Entertainment Tonight airing Wednesday, June 16, Naya’s father, George Rivera, gives an update on how her now five-year-old son is doing.
While speaking to E.T. host Kevin Fraser, George discussed how his family is healing after Naya’s death.
He said Josey asks about his mom frequently.
“Tough situation, especially because he was there — it’s not like you’re talking about a ghost that’s floating around, right? He’s got memories as well, but boy is he coming around, right? Really strong kid,” George tells E.T.
He gives credit to Naya’s ex-husband and Josey’s father, Ryan Dorsey, and her sister Nickayla Rivera, for helping the little boy navigate life and answer questions about his late mother.
George tells the outlet, “Nickayla and Ryan are doing a really great job.”
When it comes to talking about Naya and answering Josey’s questions, her father said, “We handle him and we talk to him just like he’s a 5-year-old going on six. It’s no different but when he wants to talk about his mother, we talk about his mother, in conversation. He’s growing up and handling it really well.”
Earlier this month, George opened up about his last-ever conversation with Naya.
It was a FaceTime call that came in just minutes before her death. She was asking her dad about his thoughts on jumping off the pontoon boat without it being anchored.
According to her dad, Naya would “always bounce stuff off me,” and in this case, it involved the actress wanting to “go swimming with Josey (her son) in the middle of the lake.”
Call it a premonition, because George, an avid boater, knew it was a bad idea to go swimming in the middle of the lake.
George said, “I kept telling her, ‘Don’t get out of the boat! Don’t get out of the boat! It will drift away when you’re in the water.'”
He had “a bad feeling that was just killing me,” and three minutes into the FaceTime the phone call cut out.
Continue to rest in peace, Naya.