Before Naya Rivera was confirmed dead, her 4-year-old son, Josey Dorsey, was a key witness in solving her disappearance.

On Monday, July 13, the Ventura County Sheriff’s department revealed a body was found in Lake Piru. During a press conference later in the day, they confirmed the body was identified as Rivera.

Rivera was first reported missing on July 8 after going on a boat trip with her son on Lake Piru. Hours after she rented a pontoon boat for their outing, Josey was found alone on the vessel by the leasing agent who went searching for the boat because it was overdue for return.

Naya Rivera Son Good Health After His Mother Disappearance
Courtesy Naya Rivera/Instagram

Search efforts to find the Glee star began immediately, but the following day, their rescue mission was changed to a “recovery effort” because “there is a high likelihood that the singer drowned,” Captain Eric Buschow told In Touch. Hours later, the 911 call reporting Rivera’s disappearance was released to the public. According to the caller, the actress was “nowhere to be found.”

Josey told investigators he was swimming with his mom in the lake when she boosted him back onto the boat. When he turned around, he saw her “disappear under the surface of the water.”

Scroll below to get to know Josey and his relationship with his mom before her tragic passing.

How Is Josey Doing?

Although Josey was reportedly in “good health” after being found on the boat alone, he still is struggling to understand the situation. “Everyone is heartbroken over what is surely the loss of Naya and for what Josey must have endured. That little boy worshipped his mom, he loved her so much,” an insider exclusively told In Touch. “The thought of him waiting for his mom to get back into the boat, or what he may have witnessed is simply terrifying. Josey is still asking for his mommy.”

Photo by Matt Baron/Shutterstock

He Was Close to Rivera

The late actress and her son had a special bond. “Josey is what Naya lived for every single day, he was her everything,” a source exclusively told Life & Style. “They were so adorable together, she would smother him with kisses 24/7 if she could. They were such a team.”

“Josey literally changed Naya’s life for the better,” the source continued. “Everything she did was for Josey.”

Who Is Josey’s Dad?

Josey’s dad is actor Ryan Dorsey. The boy’s parents were married for four years before they got divorced in 2018. Rivera and Dorsey agreed to share joint custody of their son. The dad often posts photos gushing over his boy and doing fun activities together.

After Rivera’s disappearance, Josey was seen for the first time with his dad leaving Rivera’s sister Nickayla Rivera’s home in Valencia, California.

Courtesy of Naya Rivera/Instagram

He Loves to Dress Up

According to Rivera’s Instagram, Josey loves to play pretend and dress up in character. In March, Rivera shared a photo of the tot dressed as the Hungry Caterpillar in a costume he fashioned himself. For Halloween 2018, the pair wore matching race car driver costumes and it looks like Rivera helped the boy in the pit crew.

And He’s Really Into Superheroes

While Josey likes to dress up, there is a common theme to his looks. It appears the playful kid is really into superheroes. One time, Josey showed off his Super Cat pajamas that came with a mask. Additionally, for Halloween 2019 the mother-son team dressed as Batman and Batgirl. Rivera called themselves the “perfect duo.”

Clearly Rivera and her son had a bond like no other.

Have a tip? Send it to us! Email In Touch at