This July will mark one year since beloved Glee star Naya Rivera unexpectedly died in a drowning accident, but every day she’s missed by both her fans and family. In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, the 33-year-old actor and singer’s father, George Rivera, talks about his grandson, 5-year-old Josey Dorsey, who was present when Rivera drowned. George’s update on Josey Dorsey after Naya Rivera’s death is hopeful.
Due to the nature of Rivera’s death, no one knows exactly what happened on July 8 when she took her son on a boating trip in Ventura County’s Lake Piru. However, police have concluded Rivera helped Dorsey board their rental boat right before she accidentally drowned. Reports state Dorsey watched his mother disappear underwater — a traumatic situation for any child to witness.
However, today, Rivera’s father said his grandson is staying strong thanks to the support of his family. Along with Dorsey’s father, Ray Donovan actor Ryan Dorsey, Rivera’s sister, Nickayla, is helping raise the 5-year-old boy.
“[They’re] doing a really great job," George told Entertainment Tonight. "Tough situation, especially because [Josey] was there. It's not like you're talking about a ghost that's floating around, right? He's got memories as well, but boy is he coming around, right? Really strong kid.”
Thinking about Rivera’s death is always heartbreaking, but it is relieving to hear Dorsey is doing OK. George noted his family is big on communication — even with sensitive topics. “We handle him and we talk to him just like he's a 5-year-old going on six," he said. "It's no different but when he wants to talk about his mother, we talk about his mother, in conversation.”
Overall, George wanted people to know his grandson is “growing up and handling it really well.” His mama would be proud.