The memorial, which was called a “Celestial Graduation”, took place this morning between 10:00am and noon at the Gibson Amphitheatre at Universal CityWalk. Rivera’s family said in a statement,
“We will celebrate the graduation, with honors, of our beloved mother, daughter and sister Jenni Rivera.”
While tickets to the memorial sold out in just minutes, fans of the singer arrived from both near and far to pay tribute to their hero, many of whom carried a single white rose. (Rivera’s children asked that donations be made in lieu of flowers to the Jenni Rivera Love Foundation, in addition to a single white rose.)
Media outlets were not allowed inside the event, but jumbo screens were set up in the courtyard outside the theater to live stream. Pete Salgado, Rivera’s longtime manager, was one of the many to speak:
“Jenni made it OK for women to be who they are…Jenni also made it OK to be from nothing with the hopes of being something.”
Rivera was killed on December 9 when the small plane she was traveling in crashed in Northern Mexico. Everyone aboard was also killed, including Rivera’s publicist, lawyer and makeup artists. She was 43 years old.