Selena fans tell us what it means to them to see her finally get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

About 4,500 fans shut down Hollywood and Vine on Friday, November 3rd — also officially proclaimed as “Selena Day” in Los Angeles — to celebrate the late Selena Quintanilla, who was honored with the 2,622nd star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Her fans and family alike gathered together to “[cement] her place amongst the stars where she belongs.”

Selena’s own star burned briefly, as Eva Longoria put it during her speech in front of Capitol Records. In the 22 years since she was murdered, her star has continued to “burn so brightly and so intensely.”

While many of us from younger generations might not remember the day she was murdered by the president of her fan club, we still have later memories of growing with our parents, siblings, uncles, and aunts listening to the Queen of Tejano. Or we remember growing up watching Jennifer Lopez embody Selena in the 1997 biopic by the same name. Selena has transcended different generations of people and to this day she is deeply loved and missed. For Selena to finally be honored with her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is historic and long overdue.

“This star isn’t only for Selena, it’s for every Latina who is out there, who has ever had a dream,” actress Eva Longoria said to a huge crowd of varied ages, different backgrounds, who despite those differences stood tightly together that night because #AnythingForSelenas.

Having been part of such a historic night “means everything” to 35-year-old Angie Flores from Placentia, Orange County, who waited in line for the unveiling for over five hours. Flores also said it was important for her to share this moment with her 9-year-old daughter Angela, who was dressed like the “Como La Flor” singer, in a bedazzled black and purple suit ensemble.

“I love how my little girls look up to Sel. They love her music, dance movies, and her unique style,” she said.

The larger-than-life Mexican American singer didn’t just break barriers in the music industry, she also quickly became a fashion icon.

Whether immortalized in the form of a Madame Tussauds wax figure in her iconic bedazzled “busti-caca,” with MAC Cosmetics’ best-selling celebrity collection, MAC x Selena, or simply when her fans DIY her iconic looks — one thing rings true, Selena’s style has become an important part of Latinx culture.

During her Hollywood star unveiling ceremony, you saw Selena on every corner you turned. She appeared on posters, on T-shirts, on a huge screen playing back the night she debuted that timeless purple jumpsuit, and through fans emulating her beauty.

Giving us major “Amor Prohibido” cover vibes, 50-year-old Benjamin Ramirez felt honored to be one of the thousands celebrating this moment. “It’s a testament to her beauty and her grace, just look at how many people are out here tonight,” he said.

Locatora Radio host and 25-year-old Mala Muñoz said it was “like having a piece of her here with us.”

Jake Rosas, who drew a portrait of Selena for the ceremony, agrees. “As I looked into the crowd, I just kept thinking, ‘she’s here.’” The energy Rosas felt was overwhelming, and although he got to the ceremony a little later than expected — he was perfecting the portrait he would later hand to someone very dear to Selena — it was still “a very exciting and unreal feeling for me to have brought my work to a place where it just belonged.”

Rosas said he also nearly gave up trying to give Suzette Quintanilla, his homage to her sister, Selena. After the star unveiling, the crowd got a bit more congested and Rosas was finding it near impossible to hand his portrait over to Suzette. But before he knew it, it was Chris Pérez, Selena’s husband, “who took the portrait from my hands.”

Although emotional for him, Pérez said in an interview that it is “a source of strength to see the impact that she had on so many different generations of people.”

Mala Muñoz felt it was really exciting to have someplace Selena’s fans can come visit and say ‘Hi.’ “It’s going to be a mecca,” she said.

“People are going to come, put flowers, put candles, leave rosaries. This is going to be a really important spot. I’m just really happy for her.”

Texas native and 27-year-old, Jessica Ramirez, said Selena was a big part of her upbringing. Her father even wanted to name both her and her younger sister after the singer. Ramirez remembers when she was 4 going on 5 years old, her father took her to a concert of hers in Rosedale Park, San Antonio, “I remember being a tiny little kid on my dad’s shoulders and she was giving me all this energy… everybody was so happy with her and her performance, and I still remember that vividly to this day.”

From murals, merchandise, fan meet-up’s, music festivals, tribute bands, petitions for a makeup collection, fans have never failed to keep Selena’s memory alive. Now, they have another piece to remember her by.

Selena’s sister and fellow “Los Dinos” band member Suzette accepted the star on behalf of the Quintanilla family. She quoted her sister, “the goal isn’t to live forever but to create something that will.” She said November 3rd was a “perfect testament of that.”

During her speech, Eva Longoria also perfectly captured what Selena means and will continue to mean to us for ages to come:

“Growing up there was no reflection of me anywhere. Not in TV, not in movies, not in music, and it was as if someone like me didn’t exist in the American mainstream, and that all changed. That all changed when a bright young singer named Selena changed the landscape of music and entertainment. And she was the face that finally looked like mine. She validated my existence and she proved to the world that we existed.

As security told the crowd to clear the street after the ceremony, fans either didn’t listen and waited to get a glimpse of Selena’s star and some paraded onto Hollywood Boulevard singing “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom.”