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Vicente Fernández, legendary Mexican singer, dead at 81

A staple in the Latin music world, the 'King of Rancheras' passed away Sunday, according to his social media account.

HOUSTON — Legendary Mexican singer Vicente Fernández has died at age 81.

A message posted to his Instagram account said the singer took his last breath at 6:15 a.m. Sunday. The cause of his death has not been released.

Known as "El Charro de Huentitán" and "El Rey" by his fans around the world, Fernandez was widely respected as the king of ranchera music.

"It was an honor and a great pride sharing with all of you a great music career. Thank you for always cheering and singing." the Instagram post read.

"He's an icon for the Mexican culture,” Edson Zermeno said.

Fernandez’s passing fell on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe for those of the Catholic faith.

“It's sad, but I mean it's a good way to remember him," Sandra Rodriguez said. "He's going to be missed a lot.”

In August, it was reported the singer was hospitalized in an intensive care unit after suffering a bad fall. Fernandez had spinal surgery in Guadalajara. It was reported that he was on a ventilator. 

Fernandez, who formally retired in 2016, is a household name in most Latino homes. His career is colored with numerous accomplishments, including winning eight Latin Grammy awards.

"El Rey," "Por tu maldito amor," "La Ley del Monte," and "Cruz de Olvido" are some of his most popular songs.

According to the Associated Press, Fernández sold more than 50 million records and was in more than 30 films.

Tributes to "El Rey" poured in, including one from the "King of Country" George Strait. 

"Sad news today. We lost The amazing legendary Vicente Fernández this morning. One of my heroes. May he Rest In Peace and may God bless and comfort his family. Hasta la Cruz Chente!!" Strait tweeted.

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