Saturday, March 29, 2008

Tejano Music Star Hospitalized After Bus Crash

By Heather Chin (March 23, 2008)

Emilio Navaira and his band members were hospitalized after their tour bus crashed near Houston.

Grammy-winning Tejano singer Emilio Navaira (pronounced nah-VYE’-rah) was in critical condition on Sunday after being treated in the Intensive Care Unit at Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston, Texas, according to reports by the Houston Chronicle and the Associated Press.

Navaira, 45, was on tour with his band Rio, and had performed at a Houston nightclub on Saturday night. Houston Assistant Fire Chief Omero Longoria says that the band’s bus collided with traffic barrels at about 5 a.m. Sunday in the northbound lane of Interstate 610 and overturned. There were eight passengers, including Navaira and his brother, Raul, who, as two Houston radio stations reported, suffered minor injuries.

Two other passengers were also treated for minor injuries at Memorial Hermann, and were released after a short period of evaluation, said hospital administrator Lisa Lagrone.

The remaining five passengers were transported to Ben Taub Hospital in Houston, and details of their conditions have not been released to the public, with a hospital spokeswoman citing health privacy laws. The hospital’s website notes that Ben Taub is an elite Level 1 Trauma Center.

Navaira and his brother Raul founded Rio in 1989 and the group has released over a dozen albums, including “Acuerdate,” which won the 2003 Grammy for best Tejano album. They signed with Columbia Records and Navaira, who continued to produce solo albums under the name Emilio, is one of the only Tejano artists to have major success in both the U.S. and Mexico.

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