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Trailblazing trans writer, actor and activist Camila Maria Concepción has tragically died by suicide

Emma Powys Maurice February 28, 2020
Camila Maria Concepción

Camila Maria Concepción fought for greater representation in the entertainment industry (Instagram/@camilamariaconcepcion)

Camila Maria Concepción, a talented trans Latina writer, actor and activist, has tragically died by suicide at the age of 28.

Concepción was a staff writer on the zombie comedy Daybreak and co-wrote an episode of Netflix’s Gentefied, a new show about a Mexican American family living in a gentrifying neighbourhood.

She was a vocal advocate for trans and Latinx representation in the entertainment industry, and led discussions surrounding diversity in TV, art and film as part of 5050by2020 initiative.

She also pushed for trans rights at the United States of Women Summit alongside artist Micah Bazant, poet Audrey Kuo and political commentator Sally Kohn.

Tributes are now pouring in from friends and colleagues of Camila Maria Concepción as they process her loss.

“My love, you were brilliant. You were powerful,” said Linda Yvette Chávez, who worked with Concepción on Gentefied.

“You were a light. A brilliant light that struggled to shine in the midst of the darkness in this world. But I saw you, girl. I f**king saw you from the moment I laid eyes on you. I knew you were f**king magic and I wanted the world to devour your magnificence the way you deserved.”

 

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A post shared by @camilamariaconcepcion on

The Gentefied team wrote in a statement: “We are heartbroken by the loss of Camila Maria Concepción. 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.”

Netflix said it was “deeply saddened” to learn of her passing, praising her as a “talented writer with a passion for storytelling, lifting up underrepresented voices, and fighting for representation in front of and behind the camera.

“She made bold and critical contributions to our industry, most recently through her incredible writing on Gentefied, and her legacy will live on through her work,” the statement continued.

“Our thoughts are with her family and friends in this time of loss.”

 

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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. A big part of this dream was missing and i should have known… I should have listened to that voice inside that said something was wrong… 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. The first time you sat in that room with us a year and a half ago you were magnetic. You told story like you were spinning cotton candy. The sweetness enveloping the jagged edges of a woman looking to heal. My girl from El Monte who went to Yale who loved her girl from Norwalk who went to Stanford. And we trauma-bonded over being the only ones in a sea of whiteness. Over leaving our hoods and doing better and doing right by our mamis. You were an angel God sent me. I’ll never forget the first text you sent me filled with so much love, respect, and adoration. You said you looked up to me but in words that felt like they were coming from the universe itself because you always seemed to send them when I needed them most. When I was struggling with making the show and was having a hard time believing in myself. You were this angel that would pop into my messages or into my office and say exactly what I needed to hear… and did I ever thank you for that? I thought I did but now I can’t remember. And fuck I hope I did. You were a light. A brilliant light that struggled to shine in the midst of the darkness in this world. But I saw you, girl. I fucking saw you from the moment I laid eyes on you. I knew you were fucking magic and I wanted the world to devour your magnificence the way you deserved. Baby, you were going to have a show on HBO. I needed that show. I needed your voice. Your story. Your wisdom. Your fucking fierce wit and fearless IDGAF fervor. You should be here.

A post shared by Linda Yvette Chávez (@lindayvettechavez) on

If you are in the US and are having suicidal thoughts, suffering from anxiety or depression, or just want to talk, call the National Suicide Prevention Line on 1-800-273-8255. If you are in the UK, you can contact the Samaritans on 116 123.

More: Camila Maria Concepción, Daybreak, Gentefield, netflix, suicide

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