27 Years Later Most of Us Can Remember Where We Were When We Heard That Selena Had Died
Today marks 27 years since the tragic death of the Queen of Tejano Music, Selena. I’m pretty sure most of us can remember exactly what we were doing or where we were when we heard about Selena’s Death.
I was just a girl who wanted to play with her Polly pockets:
I was just 8-years-old and I fondly remember my dad had just picked up me and my sisters from school and we were headed to the bank's drive-thru so my dad could pay some bills. I remember I just wanted to go home and play with my Polly pockets. Not spend my afternoon in the bank's drive-thru! Little did I know that this annoying trip to the bank would be a day I would never forget.
The bank in question was right near Cielo Vista Mall which is currently a Bank of America. I add this little tidbit into my story because whenever I pass that area I immediately get flashbacks to March 31, 1995.
It was a warm Spring day and my sisters and I were just hanging out in the backseat of my dad's car (probably fighting over who had too much arm space and who needed to scoot over.)
My dad was jamming out to the radio when all of a sudden the radio DJ came on with a serious tone in his voice and announced that Selena Quintanilla had been shot.
My dad raised the volume on the radio and the car went quiet. We spent the whole time in line at the bank just waiting to hear updates and hoping those updates would be positive.
Minutes later the radio DJ came back, this time with a voice of sadness and he announced that The Queen of Tejano music, Selena Quintanilla, had passed away at the very young age of 23.
What added salt to the wound was hearing that it was someone she knew who did this senseless act of violence. To this day I still don’t like mentioning her name so we’ll move on with the story.
El Pasoan Romy Hernandez remembers the day she heard the tragic news:
It was Spring Break time and Romy and her family were on the road headed to her mom's hometown of Delicias Chihuahua. Her older sister paged (you remember pagers, right?!) their mom and asked her to call her as soon as possible.
“My mom got worried so we pulled over at the next town and she called from a payphone,” said Romy. “ My sister told my mom the news. Selena had passed. I cried the whole way to Chihuahua.”
Romy shared photos on her Instagram page of a trip her family took to Corpus Christi just days after Selena had died.
“This was in early April of 1995. The Tejano Queen had just been taken from us just days prior,” read her caption.
27 Years later Selena is still celebrated:
I’m not going to sit here and claim to be the biggest Selena fan EVER, because I’m not, but I am indeed a fan. Thinking and writing about that moment still gives me chills and tears in my eyes because It was the first time someone I “knew” had passed away and I wasn’t sure how to react because although I never met Selena, I felt some sort of connection with her.
She was a singer, I loved to sing. She was Latina, I’m Latina. She didn’t know Spanish too well, I STILL don’t know Spanish too well. (Don’t yell at me.) And I know I wasn’t the only person who felt that connection with Selena.
The death of Selena was so tragic because this young Latina woman was at the height of her career. She was breaking barriers for Latina women and all women in general. She was winning awards left and right, just got married, and was going to give us more English music.
The world could not wait to see what else she had in store! To hear that we would never be able to find out what other amazing things she would do in her musical career was tragic.
27 years later, Selena is still celebrated through music, fashion, makeup, television series, and movies. 27 years later DJs are still remixing her cumbias at the clubs and people still go wild, (Me. I’m the people and I still go wild when BidiBidiBomBom plays on my radio.)
Before her passing Selena said in an interview, “I want to be remembered not only as an entertainer but as a person who cared a lot, and I gave the best that I could. I tried to be the best role model that I possibly could.”
Safe to say that Selena will continue to be the best role model no matter how many years go by.