NewsLocal NewsIn Your NeighborhoodMcLennan County


Waco couple uses engagement, future wedding to pay tribute to Selena Quintanilla-Perez

Posted at 4:27 PM, Mar 31, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-01 01:59:57-04

WACO, TX — Kailyn Harmel grew up listening to Mexican-American singer Selena Quintanilla-Perez, so it was no surprise the Queen of Tejano became one of Harmel's idols.

"She just got so big so young, and I think that was kind of like inspiration for a lot of people," Harmel said.

It is one of the many things her fiance, Jeremy Simpson, loves about her.

"When Selena comes on, she's not shy, she turns into Selena," Simpson said.

Simpson now shares Harmel's fandom. He proposed to Harmel on the "Selena Bridge" in San Antonio.

"I thought what better place than to give recognition to one of their idols, and it was a great night all around because right then and there, we happened to be standing next to some of Selena’s sister’s friends," Simpson recalled.

It was a moment that was meant to be. The friends texted Suzette, Selena's sister, who then replied with a congratulations to the newly weds.

Harmel and Simpson are continuing their Selena-theme by planning their wedding for the weekend of Selena's birthday in April.

"We are doing our rehearsal dinner on her birthday, so we're getting married the day after and I'm going to be walking down the aisle to 'Dreaming of You,'" Harmel said.

Harmel gave birth to a baby boy three months ago, and says she's excited to sing along with him. Until he's older, she'll be doing the singing and dreaming of her wedding day.

Harmel says she honors Selena in the way she does because she doesn't want the Queen of Tejano to be forgotten.

On March 31, 1995, Selena's life was cut tragically short when she was shot and killed.

Despite her short life, Selena and her music continue to inspire generations of people.

"The world stopped whenever she died, so I just honor her and hope her family appreciates that and hope other people do that as well," said Harmel.

The couple says they invited the Quintanilla's to their wedding and that invitation is still open.