Naya Rivera Issues Statement on Cory Monteith, Requests Privacy for Cast

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For the first time since Cory Monteith's passing, a key cast member has spoken out on the actor's shocking death.

"The entire Glee family and I are deeply saddened by this tragedy. Cory was and always will be a part of my own family and a good friend," Naya Rivera said in a statement today, adding:

"He was a special part of this world and will forever be missed. My heart goes out to Cory's family and Lea and while we are grateful for everyone's well wishes, privacy during this time of grief is greatly appreciated."

Finn and Santana on Xmas

Lea Michele released a brief statement through her rep yesterday, while various other co-stars have expressed their shock and sadness via Twitter.

Rivera and Monteith shared many memorable scenes throughout the show's first four seasons, including such collaborative covers as "Like a Virgin" and "The Scientist."

A source close to the set tells E! News, meanwhile, that everyone is simply in shock and it's "too soon" to have any idea how Monteith's dealt with be dealt with on Glee Season 5.

The issue pales in comparison to real-life issues, but it will need to be addressed at some point soon. What do you think the show should do about Finn?

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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Glee Quotes

Relationships are a lot like flowers. If you find the right seed, put it in good soil, give it water and sunlight, bam. Perfect bud. And then comes winter and the flower dies. But if you tend that garden, spring will come along and that flower will bloom again.

Finn

I had sex with you because you got me drunk on wine coolers and I felt fat that day. But it was a mistake.

Quinn [to Puck]