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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

MICHAEL JACKSON: A FITTING FAREWELL…


Michael Jackson was eulogized in words and song by an all-star list of musicians, athletes and other celebrities during a mournful ceremony in downtown Los Angeles, with the most poignant moment delivered by his sobbing 11-year-old daughter. "I just want to say ever since I was born, Daddy has been the best father you can ever imagine. And I just wanted to say I love him so much," Paris-Michael Jackson said before almost collapsing in the arms of her aunt Janet Jackson.

Watched by millions around the world, the memorial struck a tone more spiritual than spectacular. I LOVED the musical numbers performed by Jennifer Hudson, Usher and Mariah Carey. However the spoken word got my attention and the salutes that raised my emotions and MUST be highlighted are: 


"Michael always knew he could count on me to support him or be his date. ... We had a bond and maybe it was because we both understood what it was like to be in the spotlight from a very, very young age. I used to tease him and say, `I started when I was 11 months old. You're a slacker. You were like 5?' Both of us needed to be adults very early, but when we were together, we were two little kids having fun. ... M.J.'s laugh was the sweetest and purest of anyone I've known."BROOKE SHIELDS.


"I'm here representing millions of fans around the world who grew up listening to Michael, being inspired and loving Michael from a distance. ... Somehow when Michael Jackson sang and when he danced ... we felt he was right there. ... He made you believe in yourself." — QUEEN LATIFAH.
  
"When he did his iconic moonwalk, I was shocked. It was magic. Michael Jackson went into orbit and never came down. Though it ended way too soon, Michael's life was beautiful." Gordy also said, "some sad times and maybe some questionable decisions on his part," the title King of Pop wasn't good enough for Jackson. "I think he is simply the greatest entertainer that ever lived." — MOTOWN RECORDS FOUNDER BERRY GORDY.



"This is a moment that I wish that I didn't live to see come. But as much as I can say that and mean it, I do know that God is good and I do know that as much as we may feel — and we do — that we need Michael here with us, God must have needed him far more."STEVIE WONDER.


"Every time he got knocked down, he got back up," Sharpton said, and the applauding crowd jumped to its feet. Sharpton rode the moment, building to a crescendo. "There wasn't nothing strange about your daddy," he said later, addressing Jackson's three children in the front row. "It was strange what your daddy had to deal with!"REV. AL SHARPTON. 


The ceremony wrapped up with group performances of "We Are the World" and "Heal the World" sung by Lionel Richie, Hudson and Jackson family members — including his children — before a backdrop of symbols of religions from around the world. They were joined onstage by children in white and several other people who had participated in the ceremony. Then members of Jackson's family took the stage to thank the crowd and share their own thoughts, barely able to hide their emotion as they hugged in the ceremony's final moments.






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