April 16, 1971 – March 31, 1995

Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, known simply as Selena, was a hugely successful American Latin musician and singer. Commonly referred to as “The Queen of Tejano” – the genre of music she would come to dominate and redefine – Selena was the best-selling Latin artist of the 1990’s. From a young age, she performed with her family all around her native South Texas, eventually landing a recording contract with EMI Latin.

Selena’s (and her father’s) goal was to become a crossover star, but executives were wary of her appeal in non-Spanish-speaking markets. So, she continued recording and touring in Spanish (which she had to learn to speak) and became a beloved Mexican-American icon. With her brother producing and writing songs, Selena released 4 studio albums that combined sold more than 2 million copies. She recorded a live album in 1993 that was certified Gold.

In 1992, she secretly married her guitar player, Chris Pérez. She launched a successful clothing line and two boutique salons which were run by the president of her fan club, Yolanda Saldívar. Everything she touched was a success.

By late 1994, however, the boutiques started to flounder and complaints began rolling in about Saldívar’s behavior both in the stores as well as with the fan club. Selena trusted Saldívar completely, so she dismissed the criticisms. But, when her father began to investigate, he found that Saldívar had been taking money from fans and the businesses. Selena and her father demanded that Saldívar produce legal and financial documents that would explain the discrepancies, and during an argument in a Corpus Christi motel room, Saldívar pulled a gun on Selena and shot her once in the shoulder. Selena struggled to the motel lobby where she collapsed. The single shot had severed a main artery and Selena was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

At just 23, Selena’s life and career were brutally cut down. A few months after her death, her 5th and final album, Dreaming of You, was released. Critics and fans praised it and the title track would be Selena’s first English crossover hit.


Seaside Memorial Park – Corpus Christi, TX

Specific Location

Section LL; Enter the park from Ocean Dr. and take a left just past the fountain. Continue straight past a large statue in a small roundabout and up on your right, along the road, you will see Selena’s grave surrounded by hedges and a gate.


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