The world grieved the loss of Naya Rivera on July 13 when the Glee alum was confirmed dead following a tragic boating accident on July 8 in California's Lake Piru. For Amber Riley, she mourned the death of not only a former costar, but also a close friend. Amber Riley's tribute performance to Naya Rivera was so heartfelt and emotional.
As the search for Rivera's body was underway in Lake Piru, Riley expressed her belief in miracles and encouraged fans to focus on the search efforts instead of what Rivera's Glee costars were posting about the situation on social media. It was clear Riley had Rivera's best interest at heart, and after her death was confirmed on July 13, Riley began to express her sorrow on Instagram.
"My favorite duet partner," Riley captioned a video of River and her son, Josey, who was on the boat with her the day she passed away. "I love you. I miss you. I don’t have words right now, just lots of feelings. Rest In Peace Angel, and know that your family will never have to worry about anything."
Weeks later, Riley made a virtual appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and took the opportunity to pay tribute to Rivera with a special song. Riley poured her heart out during her moving performance of her new song "A Moment," off her upcoming self-titled EP due out on Oct. 2.
Photos of Rivera surrounded Riley on the screen as she sang:
God knows I'm tired / They think I know hell and that hell ain't got no time / And it just hits you like a bullet / Now I need a moment alone with my soul / I can't stop these thoughts / I need peace / I'm ready to fight, I'm ready to see / What's on the other side / I'm ready to cry, and just let it be
While Riley appeared to keep it together during her performance, she revealed afterwards that shortly after she began singing she got lost in her feelings.
"I didn’t make it 15 seconds before I was a puddle," Riley tweeted. "I love you Naya. RIP Angel"
Riley's tribute was equally as beautiful as it was meaningful.