What Happened During Selena Quintanilla’s Funeral? | Cake Blog (2023)

What Happened During Selena Quintanilla’s Funeral? | Cake Blog (1)

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Along with being one of the most recognized stars in the Tejano music scene, Selena Quintanilla was a popular model, fashion designer, and actress. Thus, it comes as no surprise that many fans mourned when Yolanda SaldÍvar took her life. Selena Quintanilla was only 23 years old. Despite her young age, she had already made a substantial impact on pop culture, fashion, and the performing arts in general.

Jump ahead to these sections:

  • Selena’s Funeral Service
  • How and Where Was Selena Buried?
  • How Did People Grieve and Memorialize Selena?

Selena Quintanilla’s funeral served as a strong reminder that the young star had cultivated a dedicated following in merely a few short years. Although Selena Quintanilla’s funeral itself was a private affair, a public memorial and viewing also gave fans and colleagues the opportunity to pay their respects.

This brief overview will give you a better sense of how loved ones and fans reacted to this tragic death.

Tip: You might find yourself reading about celebrity funerals if you're planning one yourself. If you need help with any of the tasks you might face after the death of a loved one, check out our post-loss checklist.

Selena’s Funeral Service

As with many celebrity funerals and memorial services, Selena Quintanilla’s drew a substantial crowd. These details reveal some of the ways attendees paid tribute to the fallen star.

» MORE: Create a free online memorial. Honor your loved one, share funeral details, and collect memories and tributes.


Prior to Selena Quintanilla’s actual funeral, her family arranged for a public viewing at Bayfront Convention Center (now known as the Selena Auditorium) in Corpus Christi, TX. This viewing attracted upwards of 60,000 fans.

(Video) Selena's Funeral - Corpus Christi, Texas - April 2nd 1995

In fact, despite the presence of so many fans naturally indicating that many who followed Selena Quintanilla’s career wished to show their respects, this was one factor that prompted her husband, Chris Perez, to opt for a private funeral and burial. He didn’t want the funeral to become unwieldy due to too many people.

It’s also worth noting that Selena Quintanilla’s influence was so strong that some fans who couldn’t attend her funeral or memorial still found ways to pay their respects in other capacities. For instance, in San Antonio, a number of fans gathered for a memorial mass at San Fernando Cathedral that took place at the same time as Selena Quintanilla’s funeral. This was significant because San Antonio was one of the cities where the star’s popularity first began to spread widely.

Additionally, upon learning of Selena Quintanilla’s death, many fans in San Antonio organized an impromptu memorial in the parking lot of South Park Mall. They gathered there, some holding candles, some gently swaying to various songs by the popular artist.

Funeral songs

Information about specific funeral songs Selena Quintanilla’s funeral may have featured is difficult to come by because the official funeral was private.

That said, because Selena Quintanilla was such a major star in the music world, many in the industry used music to help fans mourn after her passing. For instance, many of the 32 Tejano radio stations throughout Texas played Selena Quintanilla marathons in the days following her passing.

Those that didn’t received almost non-stop calls from fans requesting they play her classics.

Tip:Today, many of our funerals take place virtually using services like GatheringUs. If you're hosting a virtual funeral for a loved one who was a Selena fan, you can play Selena's hits for your online guests. Coordinate with your facilitator and ensure you have the right digital file types, microphones, and speakers for a smooth experience.

Who attended

Fans weren’t the only ones who made an appearance at Selena Quintanilla’s memorial viewing. Several significant Tejano singers also attended, including Ram Herrera, Bobby Pulido, David Lee Garza, and Emilio and Raul Navaira.


Just as fans had taken it upon themselves to organize informal memorial services for their beloved star, so too did many organize an unofficial procession after hearing the sad news. They slowly drove together past the home where Selena Quintanilla had spent much of her life. Some got out of their vehicles to place sympathy notes and cards in a chain-link fence around the property.

(Video) Selena Quintanilla Funeral (Remember) (The Queen Of Tejano)

An official procession also took place on the actual day of Selena Quintanilla’s funeral. As her loved ones transported her body from the church to the cemetery, many fans also gathered along the road to watch.

» MORE: Create a free website to honor a loved one who has passed away

Los Angeles gathering

Although Selena Quintanilla’s funeral was clearly significant to her fans throughout Texas, she also had fans throughout the country (and the world) show their respects.

For instance, on the day of Selena Quintanilla’s funeral, thousands of fans in Los Angeles gathered at the L.A. Sports Arena for a memorial service. This included a mass that church officials had actually already planned prior to Selena Quintanilla’s death. Their original intention was to include the mass as part of a two-day Latin American Festival.

However, Selena Quintanilla played such an important role in the lives of so many that they adjusted their plans and decided to dedicate the April 3 mass solely to her.

How and Where Was Selena Buried?

Selena Quintanilla’s funeral following the public memorial viewing took place on April 3, 1995. This was particularly upsetting for some because one day prior would have been her third wedding anniversary.

The Quintanilla family and Chris Perez chose to bury Selena Quintanilla in a private ceremony at Seaside Memorial Cemetery in Corpus Christi. The private nature of the ceremony has kept many specific details of it from the public. That said, just as tens of thousands of fans had attended the memorial viewing, upwards of 600 people gathered in crowds outside the cemetery tents.

How Did People Grieve and Memorialize Selena?

Along with the memorials mentioned above, fans and loved ones continued to grieve and memorialize their idol even after Selena Quintanilla’s funeral.

(Video) Selena Quintanilla - A memory for life ( Funeral ) (The Queen of Tejano)

Mirador del la Flor

Mirador del la Flor, which translates to Overlook of the Flower, is a life-size statue of Selena Quintanilla that stands in Corpus Christi. Local artist H.W. “Buddy” Tatus sculpted it. Corpus Christi officials estimate the statue continues to attract about 30,000 visitors from throughout the globe every single year.

» MORE: Honor a loved one with an online memorial. Create one for free with Cake.

The Selena Museum

Fans who travel to Corpus Christi to see Mirador del la Flor also frequently make a stop by The Selena Museum. Selena Quintanilla’s family established the museum to memorialize their loved one and give fans a chance to continue learning about her life and career.

The Selena Museum features many of the star’s iconic stage costumes, as well as various other items of memorabilia. Luckily, if you’re a fan of Selena Quintanilla, but you don’t think you’ll have the opportunity to visit Corpus Christi any time in the near future, you can still view some of the collections online through Google Arts & Culture.

While this isn’t the same as actually seeing them in person, it’s a decent substitute when you can’t make the trip.

South Texas Walk of Fame Star and other Corpus Christi sites

Along with Mirador del la Flor and The Selena Museum, Corpus Christi is also home to the South Texas Walk of Fame. This spot features stars bearing the names of famous figures relevant to the area embedded into the walkway. Selena Quintanilla isn’t the only figure to have a star in her honor at the South Texas Walk of Fame, but many feel hers stands out among the others due to its beautiful design.

In fact, Corpus Christi offers fans of Selena Quintanilla the chance to essentially plan their own unofficial memorial tour. For instance, fans can also stop by Swantner Park, which some may recognize as the location for a famous dance scene in the biopic Selena.

Others might also want to dine at Hi-Ho Restaurant. The Quintanilla family loved to visit it themselves, and after Selena Quintanilla’s funeral, the owners of the establishment memorialized her by decorating the walls with numerous photos of the star.

(Video) Yolanda Saldívar Interview (1998)

Fans who want to learn more about Mirador del la Flor can stop by the Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History as well. There they can see the original design and read up on the monument’s history.


As you might expect, Corpus Christi also boasts a gorgeous mural depicting Selena Quintanilla. However, it’s by no means the only city where you can find such murals.

For example, in L.A. alone, there are numerous Selena Quintanilla murals all throughout the city. This highlights how widespread her influence was. Similar murals appear in various other cities across the country, particularly in areas where Tejano music is popular.

Selena Quintanilla’s Funeral: Saying Goodbye Too Soon

People throughout the world often mourn celebrity deaths for a simple reason: the work celebrities create can have a tremendous impact on our lives. While a proper funeral certainly can’t bring these people back, it can give all of us an opportunity to celebrate their enduring spirits.


  1. “All Things Selena in Corpus Christi, Texas.” Visit Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi CVB, www.visitcorpuschristitx.org/trip-ideas/must-see/extend-your-fiesta-de-la-flor-experience/
  2. Avila, Pamela. “7 Selena Murals Around L.A. That Make Our Hearts Sing.” Los Angeles Magazine, Los Angeles Magazine, 30 August 2018, www.lamag.com/culturefiles/selena-murals-los-angeles/
  3. Gwynne, S.C. “Death of a Rising Star: SELENA.” TIME, TIME USA, LLC, 10 April 1995, content.time.com/time/subscriber/article/0,33009,982800,00.html
  4. Mendoza, Madalyn. “Photos: Selena was buried 23 years ago this week.” San Antonio Express News, Hearst, 4 April 2018, www.expressnews.com/lifestyle/article/Selena-was-buried-23-years-ago-today-12802191.php
  5. Salinas, Rebecca. “Look back: Selena Quintanilla-Perez's public memorial, funeral 24 years ago.” mySA, Hearst, 31 March 2019, www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/texas/slideshow/Look-back-Selena-Quintanilla-Perez-s-memorial-180062.php
  6. “The Selena Museum.” Google Arts & Culture, Google, artsandculture.google.com/partner/the-selena-museum
  7. Williams, Frank B. and Enrique Lopetgui. “Mourning Selena : Nearly 4,000 Gather at L.A. Sports Arena Memorial for Slain Singer.” Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times, 03 April 1995, www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-1995-04-03-me-50356-story.html

(Video) Selena's Funeral - April 2nd / April 3rd, 1995


Why was Selena's funeral open casket? ›

The only reason he left the coffin open was because people attending the funeral kept asking him if Selena's body was really there. This bothered him, so he chose to open the coffin so they could see the artist's corpse at her funeral.

What did Selena wear in her casket? ›

About an hour before the 12-hour visitation ended, the family opened the coffin revealing the singer, wearing a purple dress. A family friend said the decision followed some fans' speculation that Selena's body was not inside.

What kind of funeral did Selena have? ›

The Quintanilla family and Chris Perez chose to bury Selena Quintanilla in a private ceremony at Seaside Memorial Cemetery in Corpus Christi. The private nature of the ceremony has kept many specific details of it from the public.

Why did they put a gate around Selena's grave? ›

Cemetery workers have erected a 5-foot chain-link fence around Selena's grave to keep people from disturbing a large arrangement of white roses, purple flowers and palm leaves that adorn the spot.

Who took pictures of Selena's body? ›

Selena's father, Abraham Quintanilla Jr., and husband, Chris Perez, also arrived at a financial settlement with Arnold Ortiz, the former Seaside janitor who took four photos of Selena. The amount of the settlement was not disclosed.

Was Selena holding a ring when she died? ›

HOUSTON (AP) _ As paramedics frantically tried to save the dying Tejano singer Selena, they noticed something held tightly in her clenched right fist.

What part of the body did Selena? ›

It revealed that the bullet had entered Selena's upper right back, near her shoulder blade, passed through her chest cavity, severed the right subclavian artery, and exited her right upper chest.

Who did Selena's makeup on her funeral? ›

Some time ago there was a "rumor" stating that Selena's cousin Sarah did her makeup for her funeral. Sarah cleared up those rumors, ty for clarifying. Some fans seem to think her other cousin Debra did her makeup, that is untrue. The funeral home did her makeup.

Why did Selena go barefoot? ›

After stumbling on the red carpet, the singer decided to play it safe while introducing the award for outstanding performance by a female actor with her Only Murders in the Building co-star, Martin Short.

Did Selena have a dream before she died? ›

In the repeated dream (which was said to have frightened the late star) Selena reportedly saw a white rose that was thrown at her — but she could never catch the rose, nor see who threw it — and the dream was said to have ended with the appearance of a white light every time.

How long did Selena Live before she died? ›

Selena was just 23-years-old when she was shot by Yolanda Saldíva, a deranged fan and former manager of the singer's boutique line. She died of her injuries in Corpus Christi, Texas — but more than two decades after her death, Selena's legacy, and music continue to live on.

Did JLo wear Selena's outfits? ›

JLo of course also famously played Selena in the 1997 movie biopic, called Selena, Also donning the iconic purple outfit for some of the film's scenes, Lopez looked every inch the Texan-born star.

What is Selena buried? ›

Who kept Selena's money? ›

Late Tejano singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez' life and legacy quickly turned into a yearslong legal feud between her widower Chris Perez and family. After the singer's death, Perez signed over legal rights to Selena's estate to the family.

Did Chris Perez ever remarry? ›

He remarried in 2001. Today, Chris and his wife have two children. According to Newsweek, Pérez married Venessa Villanueva in 2001, six years after Selena's passing.

What happened to Selena's clothes? ›

After her death, Chris Pérez, Selena's widower, took over the business. The San Antonio boutique was closed sometime after 1999.
Selena Etc.
TypeClothing store hair salon nail salon
FounderSelena Quintanilla-Pérez
DefunctJuly 1, 2009
Area servedTexas
Key peopleSelena Quintanilla Pérez (owner) Yolanda Saldívar (Former manager)
4 more rows

Were is Selena buried? ›

When did they bury Selena? ›

She was laid to rest during a private funeral on April 3, 1995 at Seaside Memorial Cemetery, a day after what would have been her three-year wedding anniversary with Chris Perez.

Was Selena's ring ever found? ›

He wrapped it in gauze and took it into the hospital, where he handed it to a security guard, who turned it over to a policeman. Friday, as Fredrickson testified in the murder trial of former Selena Fan Club president Yolanda Saldivar, he identified the ring, still caked with blood and wrapped in gauze.

How much did Selena's ring cost? ›

The David Webb Fluted emerald, azurmalachite cocktail 18-carat gold ring is worth $18,800, according to the Selena Gomez Style Blog.

Did Selena ever go diamond? ›

Selena released Amor Prohibido in March 1994; it was certified double Diamond by the RIAA, denoting shipments of two million copies in the United States.
Studio albums.
TitleEntre a Mi Mundo
Peak chart positionsUS Latin4
US Regional Mexican1
CertificationsRIAA: Diamond (Latin)
6 more columns

What happened to the hotel room Selena was shot in? ›

Corpus Christi, Texas

Selena was shot in room 158. The room has since been renumbered to 150. Selena's manager Yolanda Saldívar surrendered to police and the FBI after a standoff that lasted nearly nine and a half hours. 3,000 fans gathered for a memorial the next day in Corpus Christi's Bayfront Plaza.

What was Selena's net worth before she died? ›

Selena Quintanilla-Perez, mononymously known by just her first name, Selena, was a singer and songwriter who had a net worth equal to $5 million at the time of her death in 1995, after adjusting for inflation. Quintanilla-Perez is still considered the "Queen of Tejano music" despite her untimely passing.

How did they bury Selena? ›

Together with Chris, the Quintanilla family buried Selena in a private ceremony at Seaside Memorial Cemetery. To make sure her fans were still with them despite the ceremony's private nature, Selena's burial was broadcasted live. People watched as the guests piled white roses on top of her coffin to pay their respects.

What was Selena's autopsy report? ›

Selena and her tragic end

According to El Mañana, singer Selena Quintanilla was shot by her supposed friend, Yolanda Saldívar. The bullet entered her back, at shoulder height and exited through her chest. According to forensic pathologist Lloyd White, this wound caused the artist to bleed to death.

Who did Selena talk to in the bathroom? ›

“Selena: The Series” depicts a heartfelt moment in which Selena becomes tongue-tied over meeting her idol while she's washing her hands. In the scene, Selena even thanks Canales for “going first and making the road easier for a girl singer,” since most Tejano singers at the time were men.

Why do Selena hands shake? ›

Taking it in her stride, the Look at Her Now singer informed her followers it is because of the medication she takes to manage lupus disease. Responding to a fan, Selena wrote, “I shake because of my medication for lupus.” She added, “Also read my disclaimer. I ain't no pro.”

Did Selena wear makeup? ›

"Whenever we had to do a TV show, on-air performance or red carpets, Selena did her own makeup," Suzette shared. "She didn't have a dedicated makeup artist... She would pull out her brushes and do everything herself, and once we arrived on-set a makeup artist would touch her up here and there."

Who saved Selena life? ›

Back in 2017, the pair proved just how close they truly were after Francia donated her kidney to Selena. The singer needed the transplant due to complications from lupus, an autoimmune disease she was diagnosed with back in 2014. (She first shared her diagnosis in a 2015 interview with Billboard.)

What song came out after Selena died? ›

Listen to Selena Quintanilla's Posthumous New Single 'Como Te Quiero Yo A Ti'

What was Selena doing before she died? ›

A month before her death, Selena was at the height of her career: On February 26, 1995, she performed with her band Los Dinos for more than 60,000 people at the Houston Astrodome in her iconic purple pantsuit.

What are 3 important facts about Selena Quintanilla? ›

Selena was the first Tejano artist ever to win a Grammy Award. Selena's album "Ven Conmigo" was the first Tejano album ever to go Gold. Selena was named "Female Artist of The Year" for 9 years in a row, at the Tejano Music Awards. Selena y Los Dinos was named 3rd Best Dressed Group in 1994.

Did Selena Quintanilla have kids? ›

"There were some things that were just ridiculous." All those rumors were false, and Selena did not have any children.

Who owns Selena Quintanilla music? ›

Selena At 50: Preserving And Protecting A Precious Legacy

Selena's brother was able to digitally update her voice to sound exactly as she did before her death in 1995, according to her father. The newly released songs are all part of the catalog belonging to the family's record company, Q Productions.

What is Selena's most famous outfit? ›

This influence is clear in what is arguably Selena's most well-known ensemble: the purple jumpsuit she wore to her last televised concert at the Astrodome, in 1995.

Was Selena's jumpsuit red or purple? ›

What is more memorable than the movie line “anything for Selenas”? The iconic purple jumpsuit has arrived at Warner Bros.

How much did Jennifer Lopez get paid for Selena? ›

Lo's movie career exploded after she landed the coveted starring role of Tejana singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez in the 1997 movie, Selena, a gig that paid her $1 million, according to IMDb.

Was Selena Quintanilla's funeral open casket? ›

Ultimately, the Quintanilla family allowed fans to see the singer's burial outfit, a purple dress. They then closed the casket and, later, proceeding with a private burial service.

Did Selena's family refuse medical treatment? ›

He shot down rumors that he denied Selena a blood transfusion because of religious beliefs. "Selena was given blood by the doctor.

Was Selena buried in the purple dress? ›

Selena was buried in the purple outfit she wore to the 1995 Tejano Music Awards just a month before she died. Previous version of this included a photo of a different outfit.


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