On March 31, 1995, the day she died, Selena had a crossover album, ”Dreaming of You,” a million-dollar record deal, a Grammy, a clothing line, brand endorsements and a fan base that grew exponentially with each appearance. Hispanic Business magazine had named her one of the most successful Latin entertainers in the world. The cumbia singer had come a long way from performing in her father’s restaurant in Lake Jackson, Tex., with her family’s band, Selena Y Los Dinos.
At the time of her death – the head of her fan club fatally shot her at a Corpus Christi motel–the 23-year-old was set to release her first English-language album. Her passing made international news, and more than 60,000 mourners attended her funeral. Now, 20 years from the day, the Latina icon is being remembered around the world with concerts, lookalike contests, marathons, a festival and more. Jennifer Lopez, who starred in the 1997 film “Selena,” commemorated the slain singer in Us:
It has always bugged me that people would try to think that there’s a ‘next Selena.’ It’s like saying there’s another James Dean or Marilyn Monroe. People like that don’t come along every day. There is never going to be another Selena. It’s a special thing that Selena had. That’s why we’re still talking about her 20 years later.