Beloved astrologer and Latino icon Walter Mercado died on Sunday at the age of 87.
Mercado, who was born in Puerto Rico, was famous for his televised astrology readings, which were a mainstay in many Latinx households, reaching an estimated 120 million viewers each day, according to the Smithsonian affiliate HistoryMiami Museum.
He was known for his warm manner, ending every program with the words "mucho, mucho amor" — or, lots and lots of love — and for his bold, unapologetically non-conforming gender-presentation.
"For many of us, he’s one of the first interactions the Latino community had with a gender non-conforming person," wrote Latinx blog Remezcla. "And no one, not even your abuelita seemed to care."
He commented on his ability to break barriers and connect with people during an interview with Remezcla about an exhibit of some of his capes, saying, “I’m so into who I am, and I do [what] feels right for me."
"I’m so connected to people and to the divine for that," he added.
"That I look feminine with a cape? Everyone knows we have two energies — yin and yang — and I know how to balance them. If I have to be a warrior, then I’ll be that. If I have to be soft and subtle, I can be that, too. I broke the barriers."
Mercado died of kidney failure at Auxilio Mutuo hospital in San Juan, a hospital spokeswoman told the Los Angeles Times.
Social media users mourned his passing with emotional tributes, calling him a legend and an icon.
Some said that Mercado "opened up the world of the stars" to them.
Others said that they were "spooked" by his predictions.
Many on social media commented on his "profound" influence on Latino culture, saying his program was more important than a weather forecast.
Many remember being introduced to Mercado by their grandmothers and older relatives.
But his influence crossed age barriers.
Many users celebrated his bold style, calling him "the brightest sequin on life's glittering cape," and describing how his appearance broke down gender stereotypes.
To everyone mourning his passing, amor.