Fans and family members of the late singer Jenni Rivera are gathering today for a memorial service billed as a "celestial graduation." Pedro Rivera Jr, one of Jenni's five brothers, will lead the service at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles.
The Banda singer, who sold more than 15 million albums, died with six others in a plane crash in northern Mexico. She was 43 years-old and had five children and two grandchildren. Her soulful singing style and honesty about her personal life won her fans in both South America and the U.S. Tickets for Wednesday's memorial sold out in minutes, though some critics suggested that the decision to require a credit card and photo ID is excluding illegal immigrants from attending, reports the Los Angeles Times. The tickets were completely free, though LiveNation required those seeking seats to use plastic to pay a $1 refundable fee. Ticketholders are required to bring their credit cards and a matching photo ID to gain entry. Josh Kun, associate professor at USC's Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism, tweeted, "I have a ticket to the Jenni memorial only because I have a credit card and web access #LiveNation #CulturalFail. It's the privatization and politicization of mourning."
Rivera was killed on December 9, 2012, when a Learjet 25 crashed near Iturbide, Mexico.