Heather Morris Shares Photos of Her Boys Playing With Naya Rivera's Son in Emotional Tribute

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Heather Morris is reminiscing about her and the late Naya Rivera's close and beautiful friendship. The former Glee star took to Instagram on Wednesday to share a handful of photos of her and Rivera's sons playing together. Rivera was found dead at Lake Piru in Ventura County, California, after going on a boating trip with her 4-year-old son, Josey, nearly a week prior.

Morris -- who is mother to sons Elijah, 6, and Owen, 4 -- and Rivera portrayed onscreen partners in the Fox musical, and remained close after its six-year run.

"We started out as the closest friends and then like all new things, we went through a bit of a rocky phase. However, we stuck by each other’s side and created the most beautiful friendship built out of love and understanding," Morris began, explaining that the last time she saw Rivera, she left oranges outside her home and, in turn, her late friend and Josey left succulents on her doorstep.

"I planted those succulents and I look at them everyday and think of you. I still listen to your EP on repeat because from the moment I heard it, it struck me and I always wished the world knew more of your voice," Morris noted.

The actress continued by sharing how Rivera would send her recipes and SnapChat videos of her and her son, and how they "vowed to spend every Easter together, even though Covid stole this last one from us."

"You are and always will be the strongest and most resilient human being I know, and I vowed to carry that with me as I continue to live my life," she penned. "You constantly taught me lessons about grief, about beauty and poise, about being strong, resilient and about not giving a f**k (but still somehow respectful )."

She added that the "utmost important lesson" she learned from her onscreen wife was being "a consistent and loving friend. You were the first to check in, the first to ask questions, the first to listen..you cherished our friendship and I never took that for granted."

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We started out as the closest friends and then like all new things, we went through a bit of a rocky phase. However, we stuck by each other’s side and created the most beautiful friendship built out of love and understanding. The last I had the chance to see you in person, I had left oranges outside our home for you to take. I wanted to say hi through the window but my phone didn’t ring when you called (which it never does, f*cking T-Mobile), so instead you and Josey left two succulents on our doorstep as a thank you. I planted those succulents and I look at them everyday and think of you. I still listen to your EP on repeat because from the moment I heard it, it struck me and I always wished the world knew more of your voice. You sent me over 5 dozen SnapChat videos when you and Josey woke up in the morning and I kick myself that I didn’t save one of them. You always shared recipes and I admired your love for food. We vowed to spend every Easter together, even though Covid stole this last one from us. You are and always will be the strongest and most resilient human being I know, and I vowed to carry that with me as I continue to live my life. You constantly taught me lessons about grief, about beauty and poise, about being strong, resilient and about not giving a fuck (but still somehow respectful ). Yet, the utmost important lesson I learned most of all from you was being a consistent and loving friend. You were the first to check in, the first to ask questions, the first to listen..you cherished our friendship and I never took that for granted. We never took photos together because we mutually hated taking pictures...our relationship meant more than proof. I have countless pictures of our babies playing, because we shared that kind of pride and joy. So I’m showing the world a photo of our little goof balls for you, because I know that meant more than anything and they remind me of you and I. I speak to you everyday because I know you’re still with me and even though I’m feeling greedy that we don’t get more time together, I cherish every moment we had and hold it close to my heart.

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And while they never took photos together, because "we mutually hated taking pictures," Morris wrote, "I have countless pictures of our babies playing, because we shared that kind of pride and joy."

Morris concluded by stating that she's sharing these photos of their little goofballs "because I know that meant more than anything and they remind me of you and I. I speak to you everyday because I know you’re still with me and even though I’m feeling greedy that we don’t get more time together, I cherish every moment we had and hold it close to my heart."

Before Rivera's death was confirmed, Morris was hoping to "conduct an on-foot search and rescue mission" to find her missing co-star. 

In a March 2019 interview with ET, Rivera gushed about her friendship with Morris and how they've kept in touch after Glee. "She's great. We do keep in touch, I actually saw her a few weeks ago for her birthday. We both have sons, she has two and I have one. They're sort of similar in age so we always get together for playdates and they love each other," Rivera said. 

For more on Rivera's death, see below.

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