Thousands of fans bid their final goodbye to Jenni Rivera in a public memorial service celebrating her life and legacy at the Gibson Amphitheatre on Wednesday, December 19. Her red casket sat at the front of the venue amid dozens of white roses as her family and friends including fellow Mexican singers Joan Sebastian and Ana Gabriel paid their tributes.
"We're not here to mourn her death, we're here to celebrate her life," said Jenni's 21-year-old son Michael Rivera. He called the memorial a "graduation of a singer, entertainer, philanthropist and more than anything a mother, the best mother." He additionally said in between the video tributes, "She's a fighter and she knows it's in all of us."
Her four other children also spoke lovingly of their mother. Her oldest daughter Janney "Chiquis" Marin Rivera declared the late singer "the best mom we could ask for." She continued singing praise for the Diva de la Banda, "She's funny, playful, passionate and strict when needed and an absolute warrior when it comes to making sure we're okay!"
Another heartfelt tribute came from her other daughter Jenicka Lopez Rivera. "My mom was beautiful and she had a giving heart," the teen girl said in front of more than 6.000 people with teary eyes. "And I'm sorry for not being an obedient daughter, a respectful daughter. I can say mom that you are my warrior, you are my rock."
11-year-old Johnny, her youngest son from her marriage with her second husband Juan Lopez who died in 2009, additionally stated, "The person that everyone's talking about is my mom. Mama, I've been crying so much these last few days. I miss you so much. I hope you're taking care of my dad and I hope he's taking care of you, too."
"I've never seen a mom work so hard to accomplish anything," he said. "I only had 11 short years with my mom. But it's a real honor to say that Jenni Rivera is my mom. That she still lives in me. This is the hardest thing I've ever had to go through in my life, but I am happy to say my mother has moved on and she's finally happy."
Her brother Pedro Rivera Jr., who is a pastor, said of his sister is Spanish, "Because she had the courage and power inside her, she said she would never give up and was victorious. ... My sister, Jenni, died in a plane accident, but it was not an accident, God has a purpose for all of us and God gave let us borrow her for 43 years and enjoy her."