Fans pay tribute to Naya Rivera during vigil at Piru Lake where Glee star tragically drowned

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Dozens of adoring fans gathered for a vigil in honor of Naya Rivera on Saturday night by the lake where the Glee star tragically drowned last month.

The event on the ‘Naya Army’ Twitter fan page took place at a gazebo above Piru Lake outside Los Angeles, decorated with photos of the 33-year-old actress and hundreds of children. memories.

It gave fans a chance to say goodbye to Rivera by sharing stories about how she affected their lives.

Many praised Rivera’s breakout role as Santana Lopez on Glee, saying her portrayal of the lesbian character inspired them to step out.

“Without Glee, I swear I wouldn’t be here. I wouldn’t be alive, ”said one fan.

“After seeing them on TV, I felt like it was okay to be different,” added another.

Fans gathered for a vigil in honor of Naya Rivera on Saturday at Lake Piru, where the Glee star tragically drowned last month

Fans shared stories of how Rivera touched their lives as they stood outside the huge makeshift memorial

Fans shared stories of how Rivera touched their lives as they stood outside the huge makeshift memorial

Participants practiced social distancing by waiting in line for a speaking turn at the vigil and leaving memories

Participants practiced social distancing by waiting in line for a speaking turn at the vigil and leaving memories

Fans drop balloons over lake where Rivera tragically lost his life last month

Fans drop balloons over lake where Rivera tragically lost his life last month

Fans brought a variety of different tributes to be placed on the fence overlooking Lake Piru, where Naya was killed on July 8.

Fans brought a variety of different tributes to be placed on the fence overlooking Lake Piru, where Naya was killed on July 8.

Fans line up and listen to a speaker share how Rivera has personally influenced his life through his acting

Fans line up and listen to a speaker share how Rivera has personally influenced his life through his acting

A bunch of dried flowers are seen next to a photo of Rivera and some drawings left by fans

A bunch of dried flowers are seen next to a photo of Rivera and some drawings left by fans

Rivera drowned on July 8 while on a pontoon boat with her four-year-old son Josey (pictured together in 2019)

Rivera drowned on July 8 while on a pontoon boat with her four-year-old son Josey (pictured together in 2019)

The vigil drew fans from across the United States, with some from Oregon and Indiana to pay their respects.

Participants practiced social distancing as they lined up and waited for their chance to pick up the microphone on a makeshift stage surrounded by flowers, candles and crosses.

Many fans have opened up about how Rivera inspired them with her breakout role as Santana Lopez in Glee (pictured)

Many fans have opened up about how Rivera inspired them with her breakout role as Santana Lopez in Glee (pictured)

At the center of the stage, a life-size poster of Rivera smiled at fans who left more memories than there already were.

Despite the tragic circumstances that brought them together, fans kept it clear and honored Rivera by dancing to some of his favorite songs.

Liset Ortiz, who organized the event, said: “It’s terribly sad but we wanted to celebrate his life and his talent.

“We want to show how much love there is for her.

The vigil took place just over a week after Rivera’s burial on July 24 at the famed Forest Lawn Memorial Park cemetery in the Hollywood Hills.

New details of the actress’ fatal accident were revealed Thursday in a death certificate stating that she drowned minutes after falling into the lake almost four weeks ago.

Rivera went missing on July 8 while visiting Piru Lake with her four-year-old son Josey.

Authorities began searching for the star that night after finding Josey asleep in his life jacket on the pontoon boat his mother had hired.

His body was found four days later in the lake.

An autopsy determined her death was accidental, with no underlying cause or condition. No drugs or alcohol were present in his system either.

The vigil drew fans from across the United States, with some from Oregon and Indiana to pay their respects.

The vigil drew fans from across the United States, with some from Oregon and Indiana to pay their respects.

Older woman shares how she was personally touched by Rivera

Older woman shares how she was personally touched by Rivera

Fans line up to write messages that vigil organizers plan to pass on to Rivera's family

Fans line up to write messages that vigil organizers plan to pass on to Rivera’s family

Many of the attendees wore matching t-shirts with an infinity sign, butterflies and the words: 'In memory of Naya'

Many participants wore matching t-shirts with an infinity sign, butterflies and the words: “In memory of Naya”

Poster lists powerful adjectives describing Rivera alongside hundreds of fan names

Poster lists powerful adjectives describing Rivera alongside hundreds of fan names

Fans signed a gay pride flag of Mexico that was fashioned onto the fence alongside other touching tributes

Fans signed a gay pride flag of Mexico that was fashioned onto the fence alongside other touching tributes

According to authorities, Rivera’s last moments were spent saving her son.

Police said it appeared Rivera “had gathered enough energy to get her son back to the boat, but not enough to save himself”.

Rivera’s family shared a statement about her death last week, saying, “Heaven has won our sassy angel. “

“We are very grateful for the outpouring of love and prayers for Naya, Josey and our family over the past week.

“As we mourn the loss of our beautiful legend, we are fortunate to honor his eternal legacy and his magnetic spirit. Naya was an incredible talent, but was an even bigger person, mother, daughter and sister.

Organizers of the Saturday night vigil said they would collect most of the tributes displayed at the gazebo and present them to Rivera’s family, but some of the items will remain on the site as a memorial.

A woman poses next to a stack of boxes spelling out Rivera's name on the edge of the gazebo

A woman poses next to a stack of boxes spelling out Rivera’s name on the edge of the gazebo

Fan stops to place his hand on a fence covered in messages dedicated to Rivera

Fan stops to place his hand on a fence covered in messages dedicated to Rivera

Rivera's death certificate revealed she died minutes after falling into the lake on a boat trip with her son

Rivera’s death certificate revealed she died minutes after falling into the lake on a boat trip with her son

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