Ritchie was Connie’s everything – her father figure, her brother, and her friend. She idolized Ritchie and his death devastated the quiet eight-year old.
so much that Connie didn’t talk about him or listen to his music for years. In
the early 1980’s Connie came to a crossroad in her life. She became a Christian and realized that it was time to look to God for answers.
That was the beginning of her healing.
The movie, La Bamba, about Ritchie’s life and career, had a huge impact on the lives of Ritchie’s family. Connie believes that it helped her, and the family, find peace, She doesn’t believe they’ll ever have closure; Ritchie is a part of their lives every day.
Connie makes her home in Iowa with her husband Mark. Since moving to Iowa she been invited to perform for various events, singing her favorite Ritchie songs. She says she’s no Ritchie Valens, but she’ll do her best. Connie also enjoys volunteering for various organizations, and has been asked to share her story as Ritchie’s sister for different groups. Connie and her siblings attend the Winter Dance Party at The Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa every year.
Connie stays busy with ritchievalens.com and she, along with the family, designs all the items offered on the online store. Connie also has a busy social life, with many wonderful friends. She attends many concerts and loves to dance. Robby Vee, son of Bobby Vee called Connie “Rock N’ Roll Royalty.” Connie strives to continue Ritchie’s legacy.
Thank you to family friend Peterson David for his assistance in writing the biographies for the family.