Karen Ocamb

LGBT Ally Mexican-American Singer Jenni Rivera Believed Dead in Plane Crash

Filed By Karen Ocamb | December 10, 2012 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Entertainment, Living, Marriage Equality
Tags: Banda Diva, Jacob Yebale, Jenni Rivera, LGBT ally, plane crash, Spirit Day

Mexican-American singing sensation Jenni Rivera is believed to be dead. Mexican authorities have found wreckage of a Jenni-Rivera-plane.jpgsmall plane they think is the one carrying Rivera and six others that disappeared shortly after take off Sunday morning, Dec. 9 There were no survivors. KABC reported that "

Rivera's makeup artist Jacob Yebale posted a photo on his Instagram account with the locater as Monterrey General Mariano Escobedo International Airport with the caption, "We getting back To Mexico City...jenni Rivera, Arturo, Gigi and Me...Los Amooo!".....

The 43 year old is a Long Beach native and is known for her interpretations of Mexican regional music known as norteƱa and banda. The mother of five children and grandmother of two had announced in October that she was divorcing baseball player Esteban Loaiza after two years of marriage. It was her third marriage. She was better known for singing about her disdain for men.

The so-called Diva of the Banda, who has sold more than 15 million records, recently won two Billboard Mexican Music Awards: Female Artist of the Year and Banda Album of the Year for "Joyas prestadas: Banda." Her famous songs include "La Gran Senora" and "De Contrabando."

Monica Trasandes, Director of Spanish-Language Media at GLAAD wrote a short blog post noting mourning Rivera as an LGBT ally. A clip plus more after the jump.

To express her support for LGBT youth and to stand up against bullying Rivera participated in Spirit Day. In 2011 she invited GLAAD to do an interview about bullying on her syndicated radio show and the following day performed dressed in purple at the Billboard Awards for Mexican music. She was also an outspoken advocate for immigrants.

Rivera had left a concert in Mexico and was traveling with four members of her team including close friend and publicist Arturo Rivera and make-up artist Jacob Yebale. She was one of the most successful female performers on Latin charts, had a very popular reality show "I love Jenni," on Mun2 and was a coach on "The Voice Mexico."

Apparently, Rivera participated in the Latin Pride Parade in 2002 where she was given the nickname "Banda Diva" - a nickname she never stopped using.


Here's an NBC report describing her career:

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