Who Is Naya Rivera’s Ex-Husband Ryan Dorsey?

With the tragic news of Glee star Naya Rivera‘s disappearance followed by the discovery of remains in the area Rivera was last seen, one person who joined in the Lake Piru search is that of Rivera’s ex-husband, Ryan Dorsey. The two have one child together, Josey, who was found alive on the pontoon boat Rivera rented. Here’s what we know about Dorsey and the tumultuous relationship he and Rivera had before their divorce.

Naya Rivera and Ryan Dorsey had a messy divorce

Naya Rivera and Ryan Dorsey
Naya Rivera and Ryan Dorsey | Araya Diaz/WireImage

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Near the end of her six-year stint on Glee as Santana Lopez, Naya Rivera married actor, Ryan Dorsey, stunning fans. The nuptials came months after Rivera’s breakup with rapper, Big Sean.

However, Rivera later revealed she and Dorsey dated before her relationship with the rapper. The Glee star originally filed for divorce in November 2016, but she and Dorsey reconciled and she withdrew the petition.

Following that, Rivera was arrested in 2017 for domestic battery against Dorsey but she was not prosecuted on Dorsey’s request, according to the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office in West Virginia.

By December 2017, River filed for divorce again. After four years of marriage, the divorce finalized in 2018. A judge ordered shared custody of the couple’s son, Josey, and both remained devoted to co-parenting him despite their relationship struggles.

“This is a difficult time for everyone in the family especially for Naya and I,” Dorsey tweeted in November 2017.

“This isn’t some reality show, this is our life, and I ask that everyone especially ‘the media’ please respect our privacy and treat us/this situation how you would want a loved one to be treated. Perhaps with kindness, respect, without judgment, and as negative a situation like this is, with positivity and love. Thanks.”

A look at Dorsey’s career

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As an actor in his own right, Dorsey made a name for himself in projects like Justified, The Mentalist, Ray Donovan, and Pitch, to name a few. His latest credits include Stumptown, All Rise, Heavy Doom, and The Rookie.

As Cosmopolitan‘s West Virginia 2011 Bachelor, Dorsey’s website (via Us Weekly) described him as “the kid from the coal mining valley of West Virginia [who] had dreams of being a baseball player but high school fate derailed those plans and landed him on the stage, where he fell in love with a new dream.”

According to IMDb, Dorsey’s original plan didn’t begin with Hollywood. The Chesapeake native enrolled at Western Carolina University with a plan to “walk-onto the football program and major in Theatre.”

That plan derailed after one semester. Dorsey spent a year at West Virginia University, then moved to New York City “after he auditioned and was accepted to The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts.”

The actor scored his first role in a 2011 video short, Groovin’ On.

Josey is with Dorsey now

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Dorsey, who has yet to publically comment about the remains police found at Lake Piru and believe to be Rivera’s, is busy taking care of Josey. During the initial search, Dorsey joined Rivera’s father and others to try and locate the star. At that time, they were not successful.

Josey was found safe, sleeping on the boat Rivera rented and is said to be in good health. The dedicated father posts about his son on social media often. In an October 2019 Instagram post, Dorsey said:

“This is 4. #throwbackthursday # September 17 To the day my baby boy became a big boy. I love you more than love. That don’t make sense, yet it makes perfect sense because that’s how much.”