#GenZennialoftheMonth: Naya Rivera
Image credit: Gage Skidmore
In our first ever #GenZennialoftheMonth we remember actress, singer and author Naya Rivera. It was announced last week on Monday, 13 July, that Rivera's body had been found after she went missing in Lake Piru in California while on a Pontoon boat with her son Josey.
Fans have celebrated Naya's life with listening parties and rewatches of her most memorable scenes from Glee.
Rivera was highly regarded as a role model for the queer community for playing the role of Santana Lopez on the hit American TV show, Glee.
The relationship between Santana Lopez and best friend Brittany S. Pierce started as a throwaway line in an episode of the show called "Sectionals", but quickly turned into one of the first femslash relationships in mainstream television.
Celebrities and fans alike thanked her for what her role meant to them as closeted LGBTQ youth, and how her raw portrayal of a teen coming to terms with her sexuality helped them to speak their own truth.
Those who knew her have remembered her fondly and spoke of her talented light:
Naya Rivera was a beacon of hope for so many people, and her print on the entertainment industry will never be forgotten. She will always be remembered as a selfless mother, who put her son first until the very end.
Our deepest condolences are with Josey and the rest of her family and friends.