If you’re not watching Gentefied on Netflix, you’re missing out big time. It’s being praised for its authentic portrayal of the Latinx community, and one of the big reasons for that is because of the exceptional writing. That is what makes this news so difficult to report. One of the writers on Gentefied, a 28-year-old trans-Latina, Camila Maria Concepción died of an apparent suicide late last week.
A representative for Concepción told Variety that the young writer died on Friday, Feb. 21, which is coincidently the same day that the show premiered on Netflix. Journalist Aura Bogado said Concepción was from El Monte, California, and that she was a fierce advocate for trans rights, which included speaking at the United States of Women Summit. She studied English literature at Yale University and was currently working for the show Daybreak.
Her friends and colleagues have been posting tributes to Concepción on social media including Gentefied creators Marvin Lemus and Linda Yvette Chávez.
“Camila, mi amor, I can’t seem to write these words without bursting into tears. I can’t believe I’m writing these words at all. Because you’re supposed to be here, Camila. You were supposed to be there Thursday and you weren’t. And I texted you because I was worried. Because you were missing,” Chávez wrote on Instagram. “My love, you were brilliant. You were powerful. You were a creator Marvin and I were ready to champion to the ends of the earth.”
She added, “You were an angel God sent me…Baby, you were going to have a show on HBO. I needed that show. I needed your voice. Your story. Your wisdom. You should be here.”
Lemus also poured out his feelings over this tragic death.
“Camila, I’m so mad at you right now,” he wrote. “I’m so fucking pissed because I kept waiting to hear back about that coffee…When Linda and I met you, we knew you were the most special, raw talent we’d ever fucking met. We knew you were going to be huge… Mija, I knew just an inkling of the pain you were feeling and the hurt you had gone through. Mija, I hope you’re at peace now. I’ll get over my anger. I’m not ready yet. Rest in Power. Rest In Peace. Te amo. Your big brother, Marvinganoosh.”
According to Variety, The Gentefied team also released a statement saying “We are heartbroken by the loss of Camila Concepción,” the Gentefied team said in a statement. “She was hired as our writers’ assistant on Gentefied, but quickly made her way into our hearts as a sister, writer and friend. She co-wrote episode 109 ‘Protest Tacos,’ and we were so blown away by her amazing talent and unique voice. She was definitely a force to be reckoned with and we are deeply saddened by the loss of one of our brightest stars.”