Today is not only Easter, but March 31st holds a significant place in my heart and I’m sure even my dog Jack, who will always recognize her voice as I play her songs in the car and at home everyday while he naps. Ever since the first time I heard her voice , her style of music and they way she danced – I was changed for the better.
I was first introduced to Selena when my Mom bought me a mixed tape of Selena’s hit songs, I still have that tape kept in a safe place where Jack or no one touch it.
It was 18 years ago that singer Selena Quintanilla was shot and killed, leaving her fans around the world in utter disbelief. With an English album on it’s way and a list of songs that topped the charts, including “No Me Queda Mas” and “Bidi Bidi Boom Boom,” the 23-year-old was gunned down inside her Days Inn motel room in Corpus Christi, Texas by the president of her fan club – Yolanda Saldivar.
The Texas native was on the brink of an English crossover. Her song, ”Dreaming of You” was released just months after her death, topping the charts and selling over 2 million copies.
Two years later in 1997, the love for the fallen star continued with the film Selena, catapulting Jennifer Lopez to stardom and featuring Edward James Olmos as Abraham and Lupe Ontiveros as Yolanda Saldivar. Lopez was later nominated for a Golden Globe for her portrayal of Selena.
Just days away from what would have been her 42 birthday, fans continue to pay tribute to the “Queen of Tejano.”
In Corpus Christi you can find a museum honoring the singer and a memorial structure in her honor. Also, in the fall of 2012, VISA announced the launch of a Selena pre-paid debit card.
And her husband Chris Perez, has far from forgotten her, releasing a book titled “To Selena, With Love.”
“I did suppress all of my memories until this book,” said Perez, who released the book last year also on the anniversary of her death. “That was my way of dealing with it.”
While the life of the young singer was cut short, her legacy among loyal fans and the Latino community lives on.
Chris Perez shared a treasured photograph via his Facebook fanpage of Selena posing with her two dogs Taylor and Winny at their home in 1993.