Mexico City, Sep 1 (EFE).- The ashes of beloved Mexican singer Juan Gabriel are to be kept at his former home in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, where his career began, authorities said Thursday.
“He will remain here eternally and we feel highly honored by that distinction,” Chihuahua state Gov. Cesar Duarte said during a press conference in Juarez, just across the border from El Paso, Texas.
The singer’s family revealed Tuesday that Gabriel’s body had been cremated shortly after his death over the weekend.
Gabriel’s wish was for his ashes to return to the home in Juarez and for the residence to become a museum, the governor said.
The late superstar’s loved ones support the plan as a “gesture of solidarity with this land that the maestro loved so much,” Duarte said.
Juan Gabriel died Sunday of a heart attack at his home in Santa Monica, California, in the midst of a concert tour of the United States. He was 66.
The future superstar was born in Paracuaro, Michoacan state, but was only 4 years old when his family moved to Ciudad Juarez, where Gabriel began his musical career.
The governor said Gabriel’s ashes will arrive in Juarez late Saturday.
The urn will be taken to the Gabriel residence, where Archbishop Jose Guadalupe Torres will officiate at an outdoor service open to the public.
Afterwards, the prelate will join the family for a private memorial inside the home.
The ceremonies are to be followed by a festive “popular tribute” to the singer, Duarte said.
On Sunday, the urn containing Gabriel’s ashes will travel to Mexico City for an event at the Palace of Fine Arts to honor “the greatest Mexican artist,” the governor said.
The ashes will then return to the home in Juarez, he said.