Naya Rivera’s Glee co-star Heather Morris pleaded with the Ventura County, California Sheriff’s office via social media on Saturday to let her help take an active role in the recovery efforts to find her close friend and co-star. However, they have responded to Morris by explaining that the search and recovery efforts need to stay in the hands of trained professionals.
When the Ventura County Sheriff’s department tweeted on Saturday night that they were “winding down” their search for Rivera – but planned to continue on Sunday morning – Morris replied by asking if she could help.
For those intent on searching for Naya Rivera on your own, 1. The lake is closed. 2. Temps are already in the 90’s. 3. The terrain around the lake is very steep and rugged. Our teams are well equipped and highly trained. We don’t want to have to rescue you.
— Ventura Co. Sheriff (@VENTURASHERIFF) July 12, 2020
“My name is Heather Morris, I’m Nayas close friend and co-worker, and I’m trying to conduct an on foot search and rescue mission along with a small group of friends at Lake Piru,” wrote Morris. “I understand your team is doing EVERYTHING in their power, but we are feeling helpless, powerless and want to help in any way. I have left a message with the department of Rescue and Air today, and I will call again tomorrow. Thank you.”
Morris – who played Rivera’s girlfriend and eventual wife on Glee – has been vocal on social media about finding Rivera after she disappeared during a boating trip on Wednesday. Morris has asked for prayers so they can “bring our naya back home to us,” and she also posted a video of clouds moving in the sky and added the hashtag #BringNayaHome.
Despite Morris’ good intentions, a spokesperson for the Sheriff’s department told the actress and everyone else wishing to help that they would simply do more harm than good.
“For those intent on searching for Naya Rivera on your own, 1. The lake is closed. 2. Temps are already in the 90’s. 3. The terrain around the lake is very steep and rugged. Our teams are well equipped and highly trained,” tweeted the spokesperson. “We don’t want to have to rescue you.”
Rivera rented a pontoon boat on Wednesday afternoon with her four-year-old son, Josey, but she never returned the rental. Josey was later found alone on the boat, and Rivera is presumed dead.
Josey has since reunited with his father – Naya Rivera’s ex-husband Ryan Dorsey – and authorities say the boy is “in good health.”
Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Kevin Donoghue told People magazine that he thinks they will find Rivera “at some point in time.”
“We want to bring peace and closure to the Rivera family. This is a tragic event,” said Donoghue.