Naya Rivera's Glee character will be honored this year at the 32nd Annual GLAAD Awards. The young actress died in July 2020 after a day on the lake with her son, Josey, but she is certainly not forgotten. The Glee cast will reunite for the 2021 GLAAD Media Awards, where members of the LGBTQ community will be honored and the legacy of Rivera, who played the role of Santana Lopez from 2009 to 2015.
The GLAAD Media Awards started in 1990 and honors the media for fair, accurate and inclusive representation of LGBTQ people. Glee has been nominated six different times at the GLAAD Media Awards for Outstanding Comedy Series, winning the award in 2010 and in 2011. The awards will honor the 10th anniversary of Lopez's coming out on the series and Demi Lovato — who played Lopez's girlfriend, Dani, on the show — will be the one to introduce the cast. Those who plan on attending include Jacob Artist, Chris Colfer, Darren Criss, Vanessa Lengies, Jane Lynch, Kevin McHale, Heather Morris, Matthew Morrison, Alex Newell, Amber Riley, Harry Shum Jr., Becca Tobin and Jenna Ushkowitz, according to Entertainment Tonight.
The virtual ceremony will be hosted by Niecy Nash and will stream on GLAAD's YouTube channel starting at 8 p.m. ET on April 8. Hours later, at 10 p.m. ET, the awards will stream on Hulu and will also be available to stream on-demand through June.
Rivera's death was confirmed on July 13 after she went missing on Southern California's Lake Piru. Investigators searched for her body after she was reported missing and five days later recovered one that they were able to identify, confirming it was the 33-year-old. Rivera rented a pontoon that day with her 5-year-old son and was last seen three hours after that. At the time, Filmore police received a call reporting that another boater had spotted the craft floating adrift in the lake, which is located approximately 56 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles.
Josey was discovered sleeping by himself and unharmed. He told authorities that he and his mom had gone swimming, but Rivera was not believed to have been wearing a life vest. After their swim, she never returned to the boat and her car was spotted in the boat rental's parking lot. Days later, it was revealed that she had drowned but could not confirm what in particular caused it. Officials said that she drowned just moments after helping her son back on board the boat. Her body was laid to rest at the Hollywood Hills cemetery.