Rivera Feared Dead in Mexico Plane Crash

The wreckage of the small plane believed to be carrying Banda and ranchera diva Jenni Rivera has been found in northern Mexico with no apparent survivors, according to authorities.

Transportation and Communications Minister Gerardo Ruiz Esparza said that “everything points toward” it being the U.S.-registered Learjet 25 carrying the 43-year-old Mexican-American singer and six other people from Monterrey en route to Toluca, Mexico.

Jenni Rivera

The plane had gone missing after takeoff early Sunday. The plane left Monterrey at about 3:30 am after Rivera performed a concert there and aviation authorities lost contact with the craft about 10 minutes later. It had been scheduled to arrive outside Mexico City, in Toluca, about an hour later.

“There is nothing recognizable, neither material nor human” in the wreckage,” Ruiz Esparza told Televisa.

Authorities had not confirmed that Rivera was among the dead.

Jorge Domene, spokesman for Nuevo Leon’s government, said also aboard the plane were her publicist, lawyer, makeup artist and the flight crew.

Rivera, born and raised in Long Beach, California, is one of the biggest stars of grupero music, which is influenced by the norteno, cumbia and ranchera styles.

Know as la “Diva de la Banda,” Rivera was beloved by fans on both sides of the border for such songs as “De contrabando and “La Gran Señora.”

She recently won two Billboard Mexican Music Awards: Female Artist of the Year and Banda Album of the Year for Joyas prestadas: Banda.

The successful singer, businesswoman and actress appeared in the indie film Filly Brown, as the title character’s incarcerated mother, and was the star of the mun2 reality show I Love Jenni. And ABC Studios had just announced plans this week to put in development Jenni, a multi-camera family comedy starring Rivera.

Rivera had given a concert before thousands of fans in Monterrey on Saturday night. After the concert she gave a press conference during which she spoke of her emotional state following her recent divorce from former Major League Baseball pitcher Esteban Loaiza, who played for teams including the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers.

“I can’t get caught up in the negative because that destroys you. Perhaps trying to move away from my problems and focus on the positive is the best I can do. I am a woman like any other and ugly things happen to me like any other woman,” Rivera said Saturday night. “The number of times I have fallen down is the number of times I have gotten up.”

The mother of five children and grandmother of two had announced in October that she was divorcing Loaiza after two years of marriage. It was her third marriage. Rivera is the sister of Mexican singer Lupillo Rivera.