She’s beloved for her music and cross-cultural contributions. Now fans of Selena Quintanilla Pérez may get an annual holiday to celebrate the Lake Jackson native.
On February 26, state Rep. Ana-Maria Ramos of Dallas filed House Bill 2492 to establish Selena Quintanilla Pérez Day on her birthday, April 16, turning it into an annual, statewide holiday.
Known simply as Selena and “The Queen of Tejano,” Selena made frequent trips to perform in San Antonio before her voice was silenced at age 23.
The text of the House Bill is succinct: “April 16 is Selena Quintanilla Perez Day in memory of the contributions to Tejano music of Selena Quintanilla Pérez, an award-winning singer and recording artist. Selena Quintanilla Peréz Day may be regularly observed by appropriate ceremonies and activities.”
Ramos’ filing fulfills stage one of a seven-step process to become law. The bill would need to go through the committee process before reaching the House floor, where all members will be able to vote on the proposal. The same process would need to be repeated in the Senate before the governor could sign the bill into law.
Once signed, the law would transform April 16 into a day of remembrance for this beloved performer who was murdered nearly 25 years ago.
On March 31, 1995, in Corpus Christi, Selena was shot and killed by the president of her fan club, Yolanda Saldivar, over accusations that Saldivar had embezzled funds belonging to Selena. A few weeks later, her birthday was declared “Selena Day” by then-governor George W. Bush. Ramos’ bill seeks to make this declaration permanent.
Selena racked up numerous awards during her short career, including a Grammy and "Best Female Vocalist of the Year" and "Performer of the Year" at the 1987 Tejano Music Awards. Jennifer Lopez portrayed her in a 1997 film, Selena, which includes many scenes filmed right here in San Antonio. Selena also received a star on the star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame posthumously.
Mourning for this fiery singer and personality has really never stopped, but it’s since transformed into a celebration of her spirit and style.
Check out the status of the bill as it moves through the legislature here. And if it becomes law, mark your calendar to blare some Selena tunes and remember her mid-April, every year.