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When death comes to soon or unexpectedly, it’s hard to cope with the memories and figures that are taken away. Here are 23 influential Latino deaths, from singers and actors, to athletes and activists that were taken from the world way too soon.
The Tejano Grammy winner remains one of the best selling artists of all time even years after her death. To fans she was known as “The Queen of Tejano Music”, sadly her success was stopped short when she met an untimely death at the hands of a disgruntled former president of her fan club, Yolanda Saldivar who shot her. Gun violence man.
2. Héctor Lavoe “El Cantante de los Cantantes”
CREDIT: Credit: Wikipedia
Héctor Lavoe AKA “El Rockero de la Salsa” jumped off the ninth floor of the Regency Hotel Condado in Puerto Rico. But his life didn’t end there, over the years his health deteriorated due to AIDS. He died on June 29, 1993 in New York City.
3. Freddy Prinze
CREDIT: 2012 Silver Screen Collection
Prinze battled depression for years before he took his own life. On January 28, 1977 at the pique of his success on Chico and The Man, the 22 year old actor shot himself in front of his manager.
4. Hernán Gaviria
CREDIT: Credit: diariosdefutbol.com
The soccer star who played midfielder for the Colombian national team took part in n both the 1992 Summer Olympics and the 1994 FIFA World Cup in the US. On October 24th, 2002, while practicing with his team Gaviria was struck by lightning and killed instantly.
5. Víctor Yturbide
Víctor Yturbe was a Mexican singer lovingly known by fans as “El Pirulí.” On November 28, 1987 the musician was murdered outside of his own home in Atizapan de Zaragoza. While entering the door to his home, the actor was shot by an unknown killer.
6. Nino Bravo
CREDIT: Credit: Web Oficial de Nino Bravo
Bravo’s voice remains commemorated and listened to even in the years that have passed since his death. In 1973 the then 28 year old was involved in an accident 62 miles southeast of Madrid. Bravo died on his way to the hospital from his injuries.
7. Facundo Cabral
CREDIT: Credit: famouscomposers.net
Facundo Cabral was a singer and songwriter from Argentina. While touring in Guatemala City he was shot and killed on July 9, 2011. The murder was found to be “a planned attack.”
8. Pedro Infante
CREDIT: Credit: Full Speed Ahead (1951 film)
As one of Mexicos most celebrated actors and singers of all times, Infante’s death was one that completely shook the community. The passionate aviator had been co-piloting an aircraft when it crashed only five minutes after it took off.
9. Jenni Rivera
CREDIT: Credit: jennirivera / Instagram
Another Latina star taken too soon, Rivera was a wildly successful singer, actress and entrepreneur. At the age of 43 the actress and singer had been on a flight en route to Toluca when it crashed.
Perhaps the most prominent figure in tango, Gardel was a singer and musician. He also died in a tragic plane crash, this one in Colombia.
11. Marielle Franco
CREDIT: Credit: marielle_franco / Instagram
The Brazilian pelican and human rights activist was fierce fighter for feminism and human rights. In 2018, the politician had been driving in a car on her way to deliver a speech when her car was shot multiple times.
12. Miguel Fuentes
CREDIT: Credit: latintimes.com
The Puerto Rican baseball pitcher played professionally for the former MLB team the Seattle Pilots. During the Winter League, Fuentes was in Puerto Rico and found himself caught up in an altercation at a bar in Loiza Aldea. After being shot three times the player later died from his wounds at a nearby hospital.
13. Néstor Chávez
Néstor Chávez pitched for the Giants in 1967 and was considered to be one of the most promising pitchers in the Giants organization. On March 16, 1969, Chávez was on a flight headed to the United States for the minors when the plane, Viasa Flight 742, struck multiple power lines on take off. Eighty-four people onboard were killed.
14. Cesar Chavez
CREDIT: Credit: biography.com
Cesar Chavez died over 20 years ago but to this day remains one of the most well known Latinos in history. The labor rights fighter died in 1993 due to unknown natural causes.
15. Ramon Novarro
CREDIT: Credit: kissedwithaseal / Instagram
The Mexican stage and television actor had a career in silent films that made him a leading man in top box office attractions. In 1968 the actor was murdered by two brothers Paul (22) and Tom (17) Ferguson at his home in Laurel Canyon. Convinced the actor had a large sum of money on his estate, the two tortured Navarro for hours to convince him to reveal where the money was hidden. Novaro died of asphyxiation.
15. José Oliva
José Oliva was the St. Louis Cardinals thid baseman from 1994 to 1995. The Dominican was killed in 1997 when his car overturned and hit a tree.
16. Fernando Pascoal Neves
Fernando Pascoal Neves a.k.a. “Pavão” played a central midfielder for the F.C. Porto a Portuguese club. Pavão was in the middle of a match against Setubal in 1973, when he passed to his teammate and collapsed to the ground. He never got up and his death was ruled a heart attack.
17. Geremi González
CREDIT: Credit: terryespina / Instagram
The Venezuelan pitcher was a successful pitcher for the Chicago Cubs, Tampa Bay Rays, Boston Red Sox, New York Mets, and Milwaukee Brewers. In May 25, 2008, he was struck by lightning while visiting Punta Palma, Zulia.
18. Eva Perón
CREDIT: Credit: fd_gallery / Instagram
The controversial and beloved figure from Argentina. Eva died at 33 due to complications from a hysterectomy.
19. Joaqquim Agostinho
CREDIT: Credit: correiodabeiraserra.com
Joaqquim Agostinho was a Portuguese cyclists. On May 10, 1984, Agostinho was 400 meters away from taking first place at the Tour of the Algarve. Less than 100 meters to the finish line, a dog ran onto the course and collided with the cyclist. Agostinho (who was not wearing a helmet) flew off of his bicycle and hit his head on pavement. The cyclist got to his feet, and finished the race on his bicycle, but hours later he slipped into a coma and never woke up.
20. Octaviano Larrazolo
CREDIT: Credit: anthony_eredia / Instagram
The U.S. first Latino senator was born in 1859 in Allende, Mexico. Soon after taking office he fell ill and died just six months into his term.
21. Las Mariposas
CREDIT: Credit: lorpop3 / Instagram
Patria, Minerva, and Maria Teresa Mirabal were three sisters who were activists against the Rafael Truijilo dictatorship. They were assassinated on November 25, 1960.
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