Walter Mercado’s horoscopes and predictions will live on after death

When Walter Mercado, the charismatic Puerto Rican astrologer and TV personality, died Saturday from renal failure, he left a trove of horoscopes ready for future publication, including his annual predictions for 2020.

That means his followers will continue to benefit from his wisdom even after his death, Mercado’s niece, Ivonne Benet, said Monday.

And even once that backlog of horoscopes has been extinguished, the family will keep up the tradition.

“Walter left many [horoscopes] pre-written, particularly the ones for the end of the year,” Benet said in a telephone interview. “He worked on the daily horoscopes with my sister… So we will keep producing them with the same quality and love that he did.”

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Mercado’s syndicated horoscopes and annual predictions are read throughout much of Latin America and are published in el Nuevo Herald. And Benet said she hoped the region’s media would continue to support their work.

Mercado was first known in his native Puerto Rico as an actor and dancer but became an international icon as a flamboyant astrologer, wearing silken robes, his hands studded with rings and hailing the power of love.

Memorial Services

Family members also issued updated details on several memorial services for Mercado.

The first memorial service will take place from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Wednesday at Puerto Rico Memorial in San Juan. On Thursday, there will be a memorial service at the Ateneo Puertorriqueño cultural institution from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and again at Puerto Rico Memorial until 10 p.m.

Mercado will be buried at the El Señorial Memorial Park near his home in Cupey, Puerto Rico, at 1:30 p.m. Friday.

All the events will be open to the public, his family said.

Benet said her 87-year-old uncle died happy and grateful for the recognition he received later in life. In late August, HistoryMiami museum honored Mercado’s influence in Latin American culture with an exhibit, Mucho, mucho amor: 50 years of Walter Mercado.

“The honor he received in Miami — it was beautiful and he enjoyed it very much,” Benet said. “We had no idea we were going to lose him so soon.”

Jim Wyss covers Latin America for the Miami Herald and was part of the team that won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for its work on the “Panama Papers.” He and his Herald colleagues were also named Pulitzer finalists in 2019 for the series “Dirty Gold, Clean Cash.” He joined the Herald in 2005.