'La Bamba' Star Elizabeth Pena Died From Alcohol Abuse

10/22/2014 2:52 PM PDT

'La Bamba' Star Elizabeth Pena -- Died from Alcohol Abuse


Elizabeth Pena
-- who became famous playing Ritchie Valens' brother's baby mama in "La Bamba" -- died from complications from alcohol abuse.

According to the death certificate -- obtained by TMZ -- Pena suffered from cirrhosis of the liver "due to alcohol."  She had the disease for months, but it became acute shortly before her death.

The death certificate says the 55-year-old had acute gastrointestinal bleeding hours before her death, which caused her heart to stop.

Pena died October 14th at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in L.A.