Lea Michele has traditionally taken to social media on July 13 each year to pay tribute to her lost love, Glee star Cory Monteith who died of a reaction to drugs and alcohol on that day in 2013. This year, the actress added a heartbreaking addition — her Glee co-star Naya Rivera, whose body was found on this July 13 in California lake after a search that had spanned several days.
Michele took to Instagram to share black-and-white photos of Rivera and Monteith, along with a group photo from the cast of Glee. Michele was dating Monteith at the time of his death in 2013, and People magazine reported that the two had been discussing marriage. Michele has since married Zandy Reich, and the two are expecting their first child together in the coming weeks.
Michele’s tribute in her Instagram stories came just a day after she appeared to pull back from social media after coming under fire from Glee fans. As The Inquisitr previously reported, Michele deactivated her Twitter page after many people had attacked her for the strained personal relationship she had with Rivera.
As People magazine noted, there had been rumors of a feud between the actresses, though Rivera wrote in a 2016 memoir that they had a more simple clash of personalities than any kind of actual feud.
“One of the Glee writers once said that Lea and I were like two sides of the same battery and that about sums us up,” Rivera wrote. “We are both strong willed and competitive — not just with each other but everyone — and that’s not a good mixture.”
Many other fellow castmates from Glee have spoken out about Rivera’s death. Several of her co-stars from the hit Fox show joined members of Rivera’s family in paying tribute to the actress on the shores of Lake Piru, where Rivera had disappeared while on a boating trip with her young son.
Cast of ‘Glee’ and family members gather at lake where Naya Rivera’s body was found. pic.twitter.com/qKPhtAKFz8
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) July 13, 2020
As Deadline noted, 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment joined Michele and others in remembering Rivera for her talent both as an actress and a singer.
“Naya Rivera was a fierce talent with so much more to do and this is such a terrible tragedy,” the studio said in a statement. “We are forever grateful for the indelible contribution she made to Glee, from the first episode to the last. Our hearts are broken and our thoughts go out to Naya’s family, friends and young son.”