Are you familiar with the American Tejano band called “Selena y Los Dinos”? This band was formed in 1981 by the Tejano singer Selena and has gained much popularity even to date. Among the members of this popular band was Chris Perez, who was the band’s lead guitarist.
Chris Perez gained more popularity when he married the frontwoman of the music group Selena. Perez transferred this fame to Vanessa Villanueva when he married her after his first wife, Selena, got killed.
In this article, we take a look into the life of Chris Perez’s wife, who later became his ex, Vanessa Villanueva, exploring her background and what she is up to recently.
Summary of Profile
- Name: Vanessa Villanueva
- Date of birth: 1971
- Current age: 50 years
- Place of birth: Corpus Christi, Texas, USA
- Marital status: Married
- Children: 2
- Career: Actress, businesswoman
Who is Vanessa Villanueva?
Vanessa Villanueva is an American actress famous for being the estranged wife of Selena y Los Dinos lead guitarist Chris Perez.
Vanessa Villanueva was with Chris for about seven years before their divorce, after which Villanueva focused on an acting career.
Vanessa Villanueva’s background
Vanessa Villanueva was born in 1971 (the exact date has not been revealed to the media).
She was born in Corpus Christi, a city located in Texas in the USA.
Vanessa’s parents are Mexicans, and they relocated to the United States before her birth. There is no authentic record of where she did her high school education.
However, it was unraveled that she attended the University of California in Los Angeles after high school.
Vanessa Villanueva’s career
After Vanessa’s break up with her ex-husband, Perez, she found a career in acting. The two popular movies she starred in are Memphis Rising: Elvis Returns (2011) and then forgotten memories (2015).
Away from the acting scene, Vanessa is a businesswoman who owns a nail salon/private spa called V’s Day Spa located on 605 8th avenue, Portland, Texas.
Who is Vanessa Villanueva’s ex, Chris Perez?
Chris Perez’s full name is Christopher Gilbert Perez. He is an American citizen born on August 14, 1969. He grew up to become a known songwriter, guitarist, and author.
He was known to be the lead guitarist for the Tejano band Selena y Los Dinos in the 1990s.
Soon after joining the band, Selena Quintanilla, the forewoman, and vocalist of the band group started liking him. They started dating secretly after two years of working together.
Their relationship was secret because Selena’s father, Abraham Quintanilla, who also happens to be her manager, did not support the relationship. Abraham would prefer she focuses on her music career.
However, Perez and Vanessa gave deaf ears to Abraham. They took matters into their hands, eloped, and tied the knot in 1992. Selena’s family later came around. They had no option but to accept Chris as part of their family.
Three years into the marriage of the two lovebirds, Selena was shot in the back by Yolanda Saldivar.
Yolanda was Selena’s friend and the fan club president; however, she had embezzled money from Selena’s boutiques as well as the fan club and eventually killed Selena.
The incident that took Selena’s life happened on March 31, 1995, thus bringing their budding marriage to an abrupt end.
The news of Selena’s death got Chris Perez devastated.
He became a ghost of his former self and even took to alcohol and drugs to get over the pain. Perez always blamed himself for the death of Selena. He felt he failed in his duty to protect her.
Before Selena’s death, Chris Perez always had his misgivings about Yolanda and always went with Selena whenever she met Yolanda. Unfortunately, on that fateful day she died, Selena had gone alone to meet Yolanda in a motel.
Vanessa Villanueva and Chris Perez’s love story
Chris Perez was still grieving when he met Vanessa Villanueva in 2001. A mutual friend, John Garza, had introduced the two. At that point, John Garza was the lead singer in the Selena y Los Dinos band.
Vanessa played a big role in helping Chris Perez deal with his loss and come out of his depressive state. About three years after meeting, the pair tied the knot on October 26, 2001.
Vanessa Villanueva’s marriage to Chris Perez brought her to the limelight. However, the fame was short-lived as the marriage only lasted for seven years before the duo divorced.
Chris Perez and Vanessa Villanueva’s children
Chris and Perez have two children – Cassie Gabrielle Perez and Noah Perez.
Cassie was born in 1998, even before the couple got married, while Noah was born on April 5, 2005.
Cassie and Noah are both close to their two parents. Cassie studied medical aesthetics at Paul Mitchell and completed her studies at Del Mar College.
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She works as a medical aesthetician at Massage Envy and aspires to make a name for herself in the fashion and beauty industry.
Noah was born with a medical condition called Down’s Syndrome. Despite that, he lives a cheerful life. He is a music lover.
Vanessa Villanueva and Perez’s divorce
Vanessa and Chris’s divorce happened in 2008. Even though Vanessa was willing to work on the relationship, Chris was not. He was still haunted by the tragic loss of his ex-wife Selena whom he still saw as the love of his life.
Chris did say that he had married Vanessa, hoping that the marriage would help him forget about Selena. But, as the day went by, he realized his strategy was not working.
Chris Perez’s drug and alcohol addiction, accompanied by lack of attention to his family, was also pointed as the major reason for the breakup.
What is Vanessa Villanueva up to today?
While Chis went back to pursuing his music career, dedicating his time to the Chris Perez Project, Vanessa married a bike enthusiast, Henry Soliz, whom she started dating in 2012. She gradually faded off the public gaze.
Vanessa and her husband Henry now live in Portland, Texas. As of August 2020, her husband worked at the Corpus Christi Army Depot while Vanessa managed her salon and spa business.
Vanessa Villanueva’s net worth
Vanessa got a big chunk of Chris Perez’s assets as alimony. However, she also has career things going on for her.
She rose in the entertainment industry in 2011 and is currently managing her business.
She has an estimated net worth of $100,000.