Jenni Rivera's Death: 6 Developments
UPDATED: From news of her feature-film debut to celebrity tributes, Sunday's tragedy has fans and family of the Mexican-American superstar reeling.
Jenni Rivera's death on Sunday has her fans and family reeling with grief. The tragic news was confirmed Sunday night by the Mexican-American superstar's brother and father, who said: "She never gave up and she was good to everyone."
Prior to, officials found the remains of an airplane that was carrying Rivera, 43, and six others including her stylist Jorge Sanchez and attorney Mario Macias from Monterrey to Toluca, Mexico, after her concert early Sunday morning.
Authorities began searching for the Learjet after it lost contact with the airport following departure. It was found in a ranch in Iturbide in the state of Nuevo León, close to Monterrey.
Here are five developments surrounding the tragedy:
1. Rivera's family in mourning. "We are feeling devastated. It's a devastation to the family," her brother, Pedro Rivera Jr., said late Sunday in an interview with E! News outside the Riveras' Lakewood, Calif. home. But he said, "Life is like that. We live and we die. We may be sad, but when God has the last word for all of us in our last days, it's time to go. And this was the way Jenni had to go."
2. The industry pays tribute. Stars from Mario Lopez and Ricky Martin to Pitbull and Eva Longoria took to Twitter to offer condolences and reflect on Rivera, who was a coach on Televisa's La Voz Mexico (The Voice Mexico) in addition to being a mega-popular, top-selling recording artist in the country. "Spent some time with Jenni Rivera recently. What an amazing lady... Cool, smart, funny & talented. Such a travesty... God Bless her family," Lopez wrote. Chiming in, Longoria said: "My prayers go out to her family. We lost a legend today."
3. Spanish-language networks dedicate special programming in honor of Rivera. The mun2 cable reality show I Love Jenni, on which Rivera starred, rolled out two previously produced episodes Sunday night while Telemundo broadcast a two-hour primetime special on the singer that was re-aired on mun2; that night's semifinal episode of The Voice Mexico was postponed, with Televisa instead airing a special on the singer.
4. Edward James Olmos says Rivera will make her posthumous film debut early next year. The actor tells Billboard that Rivera's first screen role as a drug-addicted mother in the gritty drama Filly Brown (in which he co-stars) is Oscar-worthy; the movie was being planned for release in April. "From the very beginning I've said that she could garner an Academy Award for her work in 'Filly Brown,'" he gushes. "She had a tough life, but she also had an extraordinary gift. She touched millions of people and she'll be missed."
5. Rivera's final press conference. After her show in Monterrey, the mother of five spoke out about her divorce from ex pro baseball pitcher Esteban Loaiza, from whom she split earlier this year after two years together. "I can't get caught up in the negative because that destroys you," she said, according to E! News. "Perhaps trying to move away from my problems and focus on the positive is the best I can do. I am a woman like any other and ugly things happen to me like any other woman. The number of times I have fallen down is the number of times I have gotten up."
6. The final photo. A purported last photo of Rivera, taken minutes before her flight took off from Monterrey, emerged online after being uploaded on Instagram the night of her death. The image, scene at the right, was posted on the account of makeup artist Jacob Yebale and also included publicist Arturo Rivera and Sanchez.
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