Leah Remini posted a poignant tribute to missing actress Naya Rivera and offered prayers for her family in a new Instagram post where she recalled their time working together. Leah shared a photo of her posing with Naya several years ago. The actresses were dressed in casual clothes — Leah in a flannel shirt and Naya in a black denim jacket — as they smiled in the chummy photo.
In the caption to the pic, the former King of Queens star reminisced about working with Naya, writing that it was a “pleasure,” despite the fact that the job itself wasn’t. Leah added that Naya made their time on the set together joyful and was able to make her laugh even when she didn’t want to.
The Emmy-winning actress also wrote that Naya, who is 17 years her junior, was the one to remind her to be “appreciative” of the work and all of the fun they had together. Leah — who is a mother to a 16-year-old daughter — added that she is praying for Naya, her young son, and her whole family as the search for the former Glee star continues.
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Just heartbreaking. Had the pleasure of working with Naya and although the job wasn’t the most pleasurable, she made it so. She made me laugh on days I didn’t want to laugh, she reminded me to be appreciative of the work and the fun we were having just sitting around with each other. Praying for her, her little boy, her family…#prayfornayarivera
In comments to the post, Leah’s followers expressed their condolences. Others wrote about how much they loved Naya and her projects.
“So sorry, Leah Love Naya’s work on Glee,” one fan wrote.
“Praying for Naya I absolutely love her n her work on Glee and other projects she’s done,” another added.
“This is so sad,” a third fan wrote to Leah, before adding, “For what it’s worth I loved that movie.”
Leah did not name the project that she worked on with Naya, but fans know that in 2017 the two women worked together on the Crackle movie Mad Families. The Fred Wolf film also starred Charlie Sheen, Charlotte McKinney, Clint Howard, Tiffany Hadish, Chanel Iman, and Dennis Quaid.
In a 2017 interview with Latina magazine, Naya said she was a fan of Leah’s and thrilled to work with her. The then-30-year old actress revealed that during a 3 a.m. shoot in the freezing cold, Leah started playing rap music on her phone and they all had a blast dancing to it.
“We kept ourselves occupied,” she said.
Naya Rivera is presumed drowned after her 4-year-old son Josey Hollis Dorsey was found alone on a rented boat on Lake Piru in Ventura County, California. The missing actress’s life jacket was still on the boat when her son was discovered.