One of the defining stars of Spanish-language television died in a plane crash Sunday, her father confirmed.
According to reports, the plane disappeared in minutes after taking off from the northern city of Monterrey on its way to Toluca.
The plane “was scheduled to arrive in Toluca at four thirty in the morning, where there was no record of flight,” reports El Universal.
“They began the corresponding search protocol at 4:40 with the help of two helicopters and an airplane,” said the statement from the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation.
“Minutes before taking off, Rivera’s publicist Arturo Rivera took a photo of the singer inside the plane and uploaded it to his Twitter account. The photo was later erased, though Univision’s Raul de Molina of “El Gordo y La Flaca” also posted it to Twitter.
Authorities notified the family there were no survivors, Rivera’s brother told reporters late Sunday. He also unveiled his plans to fly to Mexico Monday to identify his sister’s remains.
Numerous reports named diverse numbers of people on board when the tragedy took place. Rivera said that there were six people aboard: his sister, her publicist, her lawyer, a family friend and two pilots.
However, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of Mexico, there were up to seven people on the plane, though it refused to identify those believed to be there.
“The aircraft was destroyed, totally fragmented,” Alejandro Argudin, director general of civil aviation, told CNN. He said no one survived the crash.
The singer also known as the “Diva de la Banda” has become quite popular due for her frank talk about her struggles to give a good life to her children despite a series of setbacks.
Rivera, the mother of five and the grandmother of two, was recently divorced from her third husband, informs CBS News.
The Mexico-American star was once detained at a Mexico City airport with tens of thousands of dollars in cash, and she publicly apologized after her brother assaulted a drunken fan who attacked her in 2011.
“I am the same as the public, as my fans,” she told in an interview earlier this year.
The singer sold more than 15 million records, and recently won two Billboard Mexican Music Awards: Female Artist of the Year and Banda Album of the Year for “Joyas prestadas: Banda.”
“She was the Diana Ross of Mexican music,” said Gustavo Lopez, an executive vice president at Universal Music Latin Entertainment, an umbrella group that includes Rivera’s label.
The man also described Rivera as “larger than life”, adding that is ticket sales are taken into consideration, she was by far the top-grossing female artist in Mexico.
“Remember her with your heart the way she was,” her father, Don Pedro Rivera, told reporters in Spanish on Sunday evening. “She never looked back. She was a beautiful person with the whole world.”
“My friend! Why? There is no consolation. God, please help me!” Mexican pop singer Paulina Rubio wrote on her official Twitter account.
Singer Miguel Bose, who appears on the Mexican show “The Mexican Voice” along with Rivera, also took to Twitter, writing: “My dear Jenni, you will always be in my heart. Forever. I love you.”