Tejano music's first international superstar, Selena, who police say was shot to death by the ex-president of the singer's own fan club, was mourned here Saturday as a local hero-a Grammy-winning entertainer who could often be seen mowing the grass next to the red Porsche in her front yard.
"People around here, we don't really make it that big in life," said Mark Gonzalez, 16, a sophomore at nearby West Oso High School, where the principal broke into tears while announcing Selena's slaying over the intercom. "She was an inspiration. She was cool."
As soon as word of Friday's slaying spread, the crowds began to descend on this rough-hewn neighborhood tucked into Corpus Christi's southwestern corner, a mostly working-class, Mexican American enclave dotted with gang graffiti and prickly cacti. By Saturday afternoon, the procession of cars inching down Selena's street had spanned the entire barrio, their headlights on and rear windows decorated with messages of sympathy: "Long Live Selena," declared one slowly passing coupe.