Funeral Arrangements for Salina Rivera

$25,338 of $20,000 goal

Raised by 485 people in 2 months
Salina “Salamander” Rivera, 27

10/18/1991 - 03/12/2019


The most compassionate human I know, Salina Rivera (also known as everyone’s favorite local DJ, Salamander), has been taken from us too soon. She was fatally shot several times in her apartment in Hyattsville, Maryland on 03/12/2019. As this is a new wound for our family, details of the situation are still being brought to light. One thing is clear, my only sibling and backbone of my family, Salina Ashley Rivera, is gone.


The investigation is ongoing and I will update as I can. If you have any information on her murderer(s), please do not hesitate to call the Prince George County PD Investigations Unit in Maryland ASAP. They are actively looking for leads.

I can’t believe I’m writing this. It’s unreal. I spoke to my sister before this incident (we live 4 hours apart but have always kept contact). Salina called me at 4:35 pm to tell me that she was proud of the positive changes that I had been making in my life. We spoke for 3-4 minutes. Sal told me that I need to continue on my path to figuring out what sparks joy in my life and that she was proud of how far I’ve come. That phone call ended abruptly mid-sentence but from what I understood, Sal was about to go outside. I didn’t get to say goodbye or that I loved her. Thinking that the signal dropped, I called Sal back immediately at 4:39 pm. No answer. Knowing my sister, I thought to myself that her phone must have lost battery mid-call or that she was busy and would call me back later on (in typical Salamander fashion). At 4:40 pm, I left her a single text message: “We got disconnected.”

I was putting my daughter to sleep when a phone call came from a family friend who lives in the DMV area. My sister had been shot multiple times in the head and upper body. Nobody had answers on if she was alive or not. I called her local police department hoping for an answer. Hoping that she was in a hospital somewhere and that I could pack a bag and fly to her side. The police department transferred me from detective to detective for what felt like an hour while they interrogated me for any information.

“Sir, is my sister dead or alive?”, I asked for the sixth time.

News Report of Salina's Homicide from Maryland 


Salina is gone now. Her memory will live on and she is with our late father, Fermin Rivera, now. Salina will be buried next to her dad in St. Raymond’s Cemetery. My immediate family (which is now just my mom, Daisy) needs help making her funeral arrangements as this was extremely sudden and we only have 72 hours to work within.


For those who did not have the privilege of knowing my sister, she could light up any room. She was the most down-to-earth human being. She was generous and fair, a true Libra as she would say. We are completely devastated that (allegedly) someone so close to her would end up destroying her. Salina was the thread that held our family together and truly the best sister that I could ever have been blessed with. We need to honor her life. We hope to have her funeral service in NY where her loved ones reside and, potentially if funds allow, a celebration of life in Washington, DC where Salina spent the last years of her life making friends and growing her Salamander following. She loved being a DJ and creating music more than anything.

I will update with any information and a date for the funeral. Thank you for the support and love in this dark time of tremendous grief. Hurt doesn’t describe the pain we are feeling. I just lost my best friend. Salina is our everything. My dear Salina, I will continue to fight for your justice because I can’t sleep and I need you to be at peace.


Sabrina Rivera

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I apologize for the lack of communication on my part. The past two weeks have been a whirlwind and I’ve stuck to the shadows. Thank you all for coming out to the funeral viewings and burial. It was a confirmation of what I’ve known to be true for my entire life: Salina was loved, adored, and respected by so many.

Tonight makes two weeks without Sal. Two weeks without her jokes. Two weeks without her wisdom. Two weeks with her unjustly removed from this Earth. Two weeks of anger. I still mourn her everyday. I’m never sad about my loss, I’m sad about her loss. She’s supposed to be here enjoying her life.

They caught two animals in connection to her murder. I can’t wait to see them put away for life. I’ll be in court to look their mothers in the face and ask them how they dare shed tears over the little monsters they created.

But nothing will bring her back. I feel bad enjoying things without her. Drag race. Kingdom hearts. Music. Her music gives me chills. Just to think about the hard work and time she put into every second of every track makes me feel closer to her as I listen.

I still send her messages. I still have vivid dreams of her. It still doesn’t feel real even after seeing her body cold like that. I hugged her and felt her hair. It felt like she was there with me and I didn’t want to leave her alone when the funeral home closed each night. I didn’t want to throw her in a hole next to our father. I hate goodbyes. I always have.

This picture is of the flower arrangement I had made for her from my daughter and myself. I like to think that Sal would have enjoyed it.

Thank you all again for supporting my family through this difficult time. We appreciate every person that showed their love at the funeral. Sal would have been proud of how we all came together.

DC Memorial Celebration for her is still in the works.
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Viewing dates for Salina Rivera are Wednesday 3-9pm and Thursday 4-9pm (3/20-3/21).

Services will be held at:

Ortiz Funeral Home
2121 Westchester Ave
Bronx, NY 10462

Burial will be on Friday morning (3/22, time to be determined and posted) at:

St. Raymond’s Cemetery
2600 Lafayette Ave
Bronx, NY 10465
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I've been at a loss for words lately but I absolutely need to keep her family (that includes the supporters and friends because all of you were so dearly loved by her) in the loop. Things are hectic and I'm out the door to Maryland after I post this update. Her funeral date is unfortunately still up in the air as much as we would like to have a date set in stone already. It is not on our end. Due to the nature of this homicide case, we are currently waiting for her body to be released and they are, as of now, holding her until Monday. We have made preliminary arrangements with the funeral home but they cannot move forward without clearance to transport the remains. We originally wanted a viewing on Tuesday and Wednesday with the burial on Thursday (all in the Bronx). This may be pushed up to Wednesday and Thursday viewing and a Friday burial. We will update you all the minute we can set official dates and times. We want everyone who can make it to be there.

The following statement is from our cousin Dennis Rivera, Jr. when we hit the GoFundMe goal yesterday. As stated previously, it has been hard for me to communicate with so many people but what my cousin has written encapsulates our thoughts perfectly.

Thank you all forever,
Sabrina Rivera

"One thing has been made very clear over the past couple of days, and it's that Sal was loved by damn near everyone she came into contact with. In just two days, the GoFundMe campaign broke it's 20K goal, and for that, our family owes everyone that shared and/or contributed a great deal of gratitude.

In addition, as the report states, the show that she was supposed to be a part of tonight will donate all proceeds to the fund as well. I can't tell you how moving that is. It's incredible.

Now, i know that my own circle of friends and family probably doesn't extend into the Maryland area, but I'd like to ask my friends to share this story amongst your own circle of friends, in the hopes that maybe there's someone out there that knows what happened. Any little bit of information could make a world of difference, and these days, you never know who knows who...

Once again, thanks to everyone who's been there to support the Rivera family during these last few days, and please continue to stand by us and share your love. It is more appreciated than you could ever know."

-Dennis Rivera, Jr.

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Thank you all for the support on all levels. It is so very appreciated. Once everything has settled, I will be able to thank you all individually (I’m sorry that I haven’t been able to respond to everyone yet)

I still haven’t fully processed that my sister is no longer with us. All we have left are memories. I wish that I could just call my sister to get her advice again. I need this to just be a nightmare. I wish I had more words but I haven’t slept since it all happened. I will leave a longer update by mid-day tomorrow with the official funeral arrangements. For now, I just wanted to leave the current news update.

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$25,338 of $20,000 goal

Raised by 485 people in 2 months
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