Hi everyone. The world lost a legend this morning. Singer and song writer Juan Gabriel passed away at 66 years old in his home in Santa Monica, California. Various news sources say he suffered from a heart attack or stroke. Juan Gabriel was extremely popular in El Paso, Juarez and worldwide. He was supposed to play a sold out show at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) tonight. Instead, fans gathered at the venue and at his home in Juarez to mourn his loss. They sang their favorite Juan Gabriel songs. I tried to get tickets for the show at my day job but it didn’t happen. My grandma wanted to go. My grandparents and a couple of family members in Los Angeles were also sad to hear the news. My grandma’s brother in LA called her to see if she had already heard. I took my grandma to the store and it was all over Facebook a couple of hours before he called. I told her and she was in complete shock. She said she regrets not seeing him or Elvis perform. Unfortunately, they both passed away too soon. My grandpa couldn’t believe the news either. We began watching the Mexican news channels for a couple of hours.
Although Juan Gabriel was born in Paracuaro Michoacán, Mexico, he spent a lot of his childhood in Juarez. He began singing and writing songs at age 5. The Los Angeles Times said he was given up for adoption at 4 years old. His mother became a servant in Juarez after his father died in a fire. As a teenager, he left his adoptive parents to find his mother. When he reached stardom, he bought his mother a $250,000 home in Juarez in 1971. Juan Gabriel started an orphanage in Juarez in 1987. He wrote songs for several other Latino artists including one of my favorites, Luis Miguel. According to Juan Gabriel’s website, he sold more than 100 million records worldwide. He also starred in five Mexican films. A friend of mine on Facebook said his sons who live in El Paso are trying to bring his body to Juarez. His body will first go to Mexico City. Rest in peace, Juan Gabriel. You will be missed by many. Although Juan Gabriel had around 60 albums, I included one of his songs I like from him, “No Tengo Dinero” (I don’t have any money).