The latest and greatest on CNN iReport, brought to you by Team iReport.
Now that Michael Jackson's memorial service has passed, we'd like to thank you all for sharing such amazing memories and tributes to the legendary performer on iReport.com. The number and quality of submissions was outstanding!
It's impossible to mention all of the great MJ iReports we received, but there are a few standout submissions. Jm77 grabbed his sketchpad and drew many of the people and scenes outside the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, where the memorial service was held. And wag44 watched the service from New York's Times Square, where he photographed and interviewed other onlookers. Check out this incredible audio slideshow he put together.
We also received dozens of memories from fans who had the opportunity to meet Jackson. Whether at Disney World, backstage at a concert, or at Jackson's Neverland Ranch, each of the photos and stories was incredible.
To see more iReport tributes to Jackson, check out this memory book on CNN.com. Thank you to everyone who was part of this notable coverage.
Why is everyone treating him like an icon. Yes he was a great artist but has everyone forgot about how sick this guy really was. I am embarresed as an american to know how many people came out to morn this guy. All news stations should be ashamed of there morals. When is this going to stop and the real americans stand up and use there freedom of speech to speak out against this kind of behavior. Lets morn the men and women who gave there lives defending our country instead of some sick sick man.
My Dad worked with the Jackson 5 in the 70's, we had a recording studio in our house. When I was around 9 yrs old I came downstairs and looked in the livingroom which was the recording part and there stood the Jackson 5. That was the first time I met them.
My Micheal story, I use to go to a school named castlemont that was just down the street from the Jackson house on Havenhurst in Encino. I was in 7th grade and asked to goto the bathroom. When I went outside I passed our front gate and Micheal was on his bicycle I reintroduced myself as John Bahler's son and we had a little conversation. Ofcourse when I returned to class I was drilled by the teacher about how long it took. At first no one believed my story until I swore and the class emptied but yea it was way too late.
Michael Jackson was a phenomenon and will continue to be so!! It doesn't matter if the children are his biological kids. He loved them and they loved him. He's all they know. They are his. My heart goes out them and I hope they get to stay with their grandma. Love you Michael.
Michael is an ICON, a legend. He was not found guilty. Why do people still doubt? I truly hope that he will be declared innocent. I thought he was but people still keep hoping for the worst. Why are people overly judging Michael? Is it because he isn't white? It makes me wonder why there's so much indifferene or hostility towards this man who gave so much to the world?
I see Michael as a victim. An amazing talent that was abused and used by the media and everyone that wanted a piece of him. Even in his death, people are cynical and relentless.
I hope oneday the boys will speak and tell the truth. I never saw him as a freak but someone who lived under so much stress and pressure. He never accepted himself for what he was it seems. He was a genious and very good looking black man. He wanted to be white. I feel sorry for him. Sorry that he cannot enjoy the fruit of his hard work; his life ended too soon. There is nobody like him in this world, today. There will not be another Michael Jackson. He's like Chopin, Mozart,and Schubert to me. I am sad I never met him. Jenny
God Bless America
This is written by a young soldier serving his third tour of duty in Iraq. Thought you might find his take on the Michael Jackson news interesting, and he's right.
Okay, I need to rant.
I was just watching the news, and I caught part of a report on Michael Jackson. As we all know, Jackson died the other day. He was an entertainer who performed for decades. He made millions, he spent millions, and he did a lot of things that make him a villain to many people. I understand that his death would affect a lot of people, and I respect those people who mourn his death, but that isn't the point of my rant.
Why is it that when ONE man dies, the whole of America loses their minds with grief. When a man dies whose only contribution to the country was to ENTERTAIN people, the American people find the need to flock to a memorial in Hollywood, and even Congress sees the need to hold a "moment of silence" for his passing?
Am I missing something here? ONE man dies, and all of a sudden he's a freaking martyr because he entertained us for a few decades? What about all those SOLDIERS who have died to give us freedom? All those Soldiers who, knowing that they would be asked to fight in a war, still raised their hands and swore to defend the Constitution and the United States of America. Where is their moment of silence? Where are the people flocking to their graves or memorials and mourning over them because they made the ultimate sacrifice? Why is it when a Soldier dies, there are more people saying "good riddance," and "thank God for IEDs?" When did this country become so callused to the sacrifice of GOOD MEN and WOMEN, that they can arbitrarily blow off their deaths, and instead, throw themselves into mourning for a "Pop Icon?"
I think that if they are going to hold a moment of silence IN CONGRESS for Michael Jackson, they need to hold a moment of silence for every service member killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. They need to PUBLICLY recognize every life that has been lost so that the American people can live their callous little lives in the luxury and freedom that WE, those that are living and those that have gone on, have provided for them. But, wait, that would take too much time, because there have been so many willing to make that sacrifice. After all, we will never make millions of dollars. We will never star in movies, or write hit songs that the world will listen too. We only shed our blood, sweat and tears so that people can enjoy what they have.
Sorry if I have offended, but I needed to say it. Remember these five words the next time you think of someone who is serving in the military;
"So that others may live..."
This was sent to me by one of our troops over in the war...
I have seen the assassinations, memorials and funerals of John and Bobby Kennedy and Dr. Martin King Jr. Our country mourned these great leaders who influenced our country in unique ways. In Michael’s case, the world mourned his passing. Although Michael was not a political leader, his influence is more profound. As a citizen of the world he brought races, religions and cultures together. Michael took their message of hope, acceptance and change to the world through music; a universal language.
Thank you Michael, for being a part of making music that has taken me taking me through all of the important moments in my life, from childhood to the birth of my own children. You showed us all what a pure heart looks like and your children are an affirmation of that. I love you and I always will. I pray that you are finally at peace. Much love, Yvette
he might be king of pop ; but he was curse for human civilization by doing child abuse that is the worst sin ever...
he was a material bastard & has done nothing just pomp and show ,,,,,,ppl like him shod be remembered as bad human beings
i Feel the way he died the same way the capitalist system is going to end in near future/////
Does anyone know if the Michael Jackson wall is still up at the Staples Center? I heard the circus came in.
There are few people that we encounter in our lifetimes that are larger than life...I sat around my house all weekend re-listening to his gifts and reliving the experiences I had with his music. He was a giver of musical expertise and gifts and he is a legend. No matter how I felt or what I was going through, he always managed to GET me ON THE FLOOR-Even when my mom would WORK ALL DAY AND NIGHT, I still danced, sang, and rocked. His music was so soothing that I DIDN'T STOP TILL I GOT ENOUGH. No matter who you were or where you were, when you heard his unique sounds, he ROCKED WITH YOU-he rocked through you. I CAN'T HELP IT-I can't help feeling part of my history is gone, but I know he is NEVER OUT OF MY LIFE. I am sad to know that I will never get another musical gift from him. This is the story of a musical revolution that inspired the world, but most importantly, this is about the evolution of him and I and how are worlds seem to be intertwined with a constant thread of admiration and music. His vision, his dream, his voice, his moves, his persona, and most importantly his gift impacted not only me but thousands the world over.
Thank you for being larger than life, thank you for being so off the chain, off the hook...OFF THE WALL.
It’s amazing that I received so many musical gifts from him because I was born in 1985. Two of his most memorable gifts were already out in the world. From day one, I was moved by this Giver's dashing good looks, his determination to cross over genres and color lines, and his suave swagger. My first personal present from him was a monumental THRILLER. I knew right then that I WANNA BE STARTIN SOMETHING. I was and I am still touched by the lyrics of the songs in that nicely composed gift. Even when I was a PYT, I knew that no gift that I possessed after this one could BEAT IT. No other gift could kick the doors down as this one had. This gift single-handedly revolutionized how the world looked at African American artists. This gift created the genre of pop-a mixture of R&B, soul, and rock. This gift also transformed the idea of a "music video." People sing the words, but now thanks to him, people can see the words they sing...music through action.
I can remember sitting up in my room and singing the words of an immortal, and trying to "hit the high note" in HUMAN NATURE-in hopes of making it second nature. I can remember trying to understand the musical correlation between the BILLIE JEAN lyrics and the music in motion, the BILLIE JEAN video. He was truly a visionary-even back then-changing the world with pen, paper, a voice, and a beat.
Thank you for introducing me to HUMAN NATURE, thank you for inspiring me to think that no matter what I go through in this life, I can BEAT IT, thank you being a THRILLER.
As I grew to love him and what he stood for...he brought me another great gift! I guess you can say it was BAD. This gift got me through some times! This gift was so nicely wrapped; I almost didn't want to open it! "Would it be like the last gift he sent to my ears?" "Would it be as powerful as the last one?" Yes it was! It touched ANOTHER PART OF ME-This gift really gave me the opportunity to know the versatility of the legend. If only you knew THE WAY he MADE ME FEEL. This SMOOTH CRIMINAL could steal me heart in the dark of night. We became JUST GOOD FRIENDS. Even though this gift was BAD, I noticed a new person with this gift. There was a change from the happy, giving, fun loving, and smiley legend. He seemed more serious and possessed a piercing demeanor and clandestine demeanor that some people took offense to. In some instances, he seemed to grow frustrated with the world because of their rumors and speculations. I felt his frustration through the music. I would notice that sometimes he looked like he wanted to scream out, "JUST LEAVE ME ALONE!" I feel that it was here that the larger than life SMOOTH CRIMINAL began to struggle with the MAN IN THE MIRROR. As he struggled, I struggled, but I just chalked it up to the "ups and downs" of life. With all the musical serenity and peace of mind that he bestowed upon me...I had to declare, "I JUST CAN'T STOP LOVING YOU!"
Thank you for your greatness, thank you for being patient, thank you for being a humanitarian, thank you for being untouchable, thank you for being BAD.
By the next time he sent another gift of musical genius to my ears, a new genre of music was forming (Rap). He still managed to influence me to REMEMBER THE TIME when we used to JAM together. Even though it had been a while since he had sent this gift, this DANGEROUS gift, I knew you wouldn't forget about me...I knew he WOULD BE THERE. I just had to KEEP THE FAITH and hope that he could continue to prove his adversaries wrong...as he had taught me to do through his music. The world was also struggling with its own adversaries. Parts of the world still saw everything in BLACK OR WHITE, but he preached that there was a shaded area of grey. It was at this time he made it his personal mission to HEAL THE WORLD. He configured his own army with an arsenal fully equipped with benevolent lyrics to destroy the world’s issues of war, poverty, and illness. No matter who he helped or what he did, his personal adversaries still haunted him. I feared that he would be GONE TOO SOON.
Thank you for trying to change hearts through your words and change minds through the ears, thank you for showing me a side of the world that I never knew and I would later help to preserve, thank you for being on the frontline of this societal war-you were never scared to intimidated because you were too DANGEROUS!
By the time I received his next present, both of our lives were in utter chaos. We were struggling to survive, fighting to stay afloat, and suffering from heartache at the same time. I can remember waking up every morning hoping that THIS TIME AROUND my day would be different-wishing my CHILDHOOD could be someone else's because it was too painful for me. I struggled and hurt so much...I had no peace, no home, no food, no smiles, no music, and no hope. It is one thing to listen to a gift...but you have to hear the gift...hear the message, and I couldn't hear the message because I was engulfed in despair. I found it hard to do the childish, fun-loving, and innocent things I used to do like laugh, dance, sing, and smile. As my world was deteriorating, I didn't know that his was too. He tried to save face and sing to make me SMILE, but I knew the life and innocence we had once knew long ago was HISTORY. We had been used, abused, and abandoned. I hated my situation, but I hated his adversaries for trying to crush his child like spirit. They had made him feel as if he was a STRANGER IN MOSCOW-and they had tried to make me feel like he was a stranger to me. I know he wanted to SCREAM and shout out, "THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT US," but he didn't. He maintained his composure and continued to entertain the world and console me with his soothing sounds and lyrical poetry. We still managed to COME TOGETHER but not as much because we were dealing with our own issues.
Thank you for telling me, "YOU ARE NOT ALONE," thank you for screaming for me when I could scream for myself, thank you for being a part of my HISTORY:PAST, PRESENT, and FUTURE.
So many years had passed since I received his last gift. Had I known it would be his last gift to me, I would have treasured it more. Both of our lives had calmed down, much like the calm after the storm. We both discovered that our battles in this war of life had made us stronger and better people-and much to our adversaries disappointment-UNBREAKABLE. As I listened to the words of the lyrical guru, I could decipher when he wanted to CRY and when he was SPEECHLESS. Even though we were no longer THE LOST CHILDREN, he was still hurt by being THREATENED with no PRIVACY. It was like he was subject to a life sentence of guilt by the society's jury. Through all this, we still maintained our INVINCIBLE relationship. We had grown together, aged together, and our appearances altered-but the gifts of the music stayed the same. As I listen to his compilation of gifts today, I get BUTTERFLIES because I know his past did not dictate his future, much like me. He often said, "YOU ARE MY LIFE," but the truth is that he was one person that touched so many lives. He often said, "YOU ROCK MY WORLD," but the truth is he rocked all of our worlds.
Thank you for being inspiring, thank you for sharing your story through music in hopes to empower and uplift others, thank you for being INVINCIBLE.
My larger than life, lyrical genius, poetic story teller, and far away friend passed June 25th 2009-He met me as a three year old stranger and left his moon walking imprint on my heart today as a 24 year old woman. He is an icon, an immortal, and a legend. Even though we never met face to face or had one single conversation, we had millions of conversations through his music. We have grown, hurt, loved, suffered, persevered, and inspired others...together. I can't help but have a tear in my eye right now because future generations will never understand his impact on the world. Some people you can't forget because they are great...he is too great to be forgotten. Yes, you were GONE TOO SOON. I wish we could turn back the hands of time where we could forever be PYTs together. I wish there was a describe HOW YOU MAKE ME FEEL. I wish we could forever JAM together. I hope that we will meet one day-COME TOGETHER in heaven. I wish that HEAVEN CAN WAIT. I hope that everyone that your music touched still gets those BUTTERFLIES as I still do. I feel reassured to know that even if you weren't happy in this life, you will have a lifetime of happiness in heaven as you moonwalk across the sky. Your life was a VICTORY, and I will continue your legacy of music to my children.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for being OFF THE WALL, for being a BAD, DANGEROUS, INVINCIBLE THRILLER that has influenced my HISTORY: PAST, PRESENT, AND FUTURE....
(Yes I free styled this sitting on my bed listening to all his albums and songs AND YES this was composed via Blackberry...)
For Jesus Christ is our peace, who has made both One, and has broken down the middle wall of Separation,
Having Abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, So as to Create in Himself ( Jesus Christ ) One New Man from the two, thus making peace.
Believers & Christians Jews Are ONE in Jesus Christ!
It is time to take your life in Christ to the next level. It is time to encourage, instruct and embrace the people of God, it is time for you to go and make disciples and send them to the nations, teaching them the precepts and the words of Christ its all about God's Love, Unity and Equality in Christ The One and only Savior. You have helped people that have hurt you, given money to people that promised to pay you back and they didn't. You have fed those that have been hungry in Christ, clothed those that lost it all in the body of Jesus Christ, and prayed for people that have not prayed for themselves, my friend, don't stop trusting in Christ The Everlasting King, doing good and praying for those that despitefully misuse you. You will reap your rewards and God will prepare a table before you in the presence of your enemy. Take your life which is Christ temple His only true Church, your life, your finances to the next level. What better way to be His Believer, Christian, Saint than to read the words of Christ and just do it. When you can help someone else reach their visions dreams, goals and destiny God propels you into your destiny.
What are your plans for the rest of your life in Christ, what are you doing to achieve God's will and purpose for His life in you?
Apostle James R Winfree Ministries And Team
Thank You For Your Loving Prayers
And Contributions To This Ministry.
How can we preach the gospel to our world if we the Body of Christ are not in CHRIST LOVE, UNITY, EQUALITY?
Remember that life is only in Christ Jesus our Savior and Lord, So Feel free to study The Lords Website at http://www.freewebs.com/winfreeministries or Write us at ApostleJWinfree1@aol.com/ email@example.com Apostle James R Winfree Sr, at 832-618-3700 Or you can Write us by Post Mail @ P.O.BOX 5293 HOUSTON, TEXAS 77262-5293
We remain True and Faithful to this Vision to all of God's People, Believers. Christians, Saints
Yours in Christ Jesus Blessed Kingdom,
The Lord's Team
reParis Jackson tribute 16 months ago I lost my husband,who died in thr house. My grandson was there with us at the hospital as we said our goodbyes. He was at that time the age of little Blanket. He wanted to read a poem of Robert Frost, and the only words he knew was "whose woods these are" looked the poem up and he stood at my husbands open casket and recited the poem. He wanted to do this and we as a family lrt him.
i think Michael Jackson is and will always remain a legacy he has lived with many world wide and gave world wide....the funny thing is that poparatzi only spoke of most negative things rather than the good and didn't leave him alone while alive why don't they let it up and allow him to Rest in Peace. MJ wasn't weird he was just trying to live.
Also his 3 children are his children regaurdless of who the biologicals are. Michael loved and raised those children and I don't believe they should be separted nor with anyone else but his actual family.
RIP Michael Jackson you will be missed.
TO THE FAMILY OF M,JACKSON
AND TO THE PEOPLE THAT LOVE HIM AS I DID M,J WAS THE WORLD BEST ,AND I DO MEAN THE WORLD ,THAT CAME ALONG AND GAVE THE WORLD ALL HE HAD TO GIVE .BUT AS PEOPLE SOME FORGOT ,HE WAS A PERSON ,AND HE HAD FEELING AS WE ALL DO.BUT SOME PEOPLE THAT SAID THEY LOVED HIM DID,NT THEY ONLY LOVED HIS MONEY,AND NOT THE PERSON ,HE WAS AND MRS,JACKSON AND MR,JACKSON ,JUST KNOW I HAVE ALWAY.KNOW YOU,BOTH LOVED YOUR SON ,AND FOR THAT I TAKE OFF MY HAT TO YOU ALL.AND I PRAY FOR YOU ALL,AS A FAMILY YOU ALL HAVE LOST SOMEONE THAT YOU ALL LOVED,AS A SON AS A BROTHER AND MY HEART GO,S OUT TO YOU ALL.BUT JUST REMEMBER GOD LOVED YOUR SON FIRST AND HE CALL HIM HOME,SO HE COULD HAVE THAT PEACE HE WAS MISSING FOR SO LONG ...SEE I KNOW WHAT MICHAEL WAS FEEL IN MY HEART AS A PERSON THAT HAVE BEEN DOWN THAT DARK ROAD ,SEE KNOW ONE CAN SAY WHAT HAPPEN TO YOUR SON ,SO FINE OUT FOR YOUR SELF ,AND I KNOW IN MY HEART ,YOUR SON WAS NOT A PERSON THAT USE DRUG,AND I PRAY THEY STOP TRYING TO FINE SOMETHING TO SAY BAD ABOUT MY FRIEND .YES HE WAS MY FRIEND EVEN I KNEW HE WAS A VERY GIVING MAN TO ALL.AND THE ONLY THING WE HAVE THE SAME IS THE YEAR WE BOTH WAS BORN IN BE I CAN FEEL HIM IN MY SOUL .YOUR SON EARN HIS HONOR AND IT CAME FROM GOD NOT MAN,SO REST IN PEACE MY DEAR FRIEND ,I THANK YOU FOR WHAT YOU LIFT ME AS A PERSON AND KNOW ONE CAN STAN YOUR NAME BECAUSE GOD WILL NEVER ALLOW THIS SO TAKE YOU PLACE NEXT TO JESUS MY DEAR BROTHER IN CHRIST JESUS CAME AND GAVE YOU YOUR REST ,,,,,AND FOR THOSE DOCTOR THAT MAY HAVE HAD A HAND IN YOUR DEATH GOD WILL MAKE YOU PAY,BECAUSE YOU ALL ARE THE ONE,S THAT MAY HAVE CAUSE HIS DEATH,WITH THOSE DRUG,S YOU ALL TOLD HIM THAT THEY WAS SAFE BUT LOOK WHAT YOU ALL DONE..I HOPE THE TRUTH COME OUT AND ALL THAT HAD A HAD IN HIS DEATH PAY.....IN A COURT OF LAW.. WRITE BY Danny Barnes,
I loved Micheal more than I realized. I cried all the way through the memorial service. I pray for the Jackson family. I am truly amazed how the media wants to tie him to drugs and only give their opinion on what MIGHT have happened. What happened to reporting the truth (unbiased). The truth is HE was an outstanding performer. No one is on your level when you sell more albums than anyone else in the history of MUSIC!!!!!It seems to me that this would be a great time to stop speculating about what MIGHT have happened and start taking action. I am not on Micheal's level, but my insurance is good enough for me to go to several doctors and talk about the drug advertised on TV and get a prescription for it. If I took all of them they might kill me. The point is prescription drugs are not hard to get. We need to stop advertising them and prescribing them like they are candy.
I HAVE BEEN A HUGE FAN OF THE JACKSON 5 SINCE I WAS MICHAELS AGE. MY HEART GOES OUT TO THE FAMILY. I WILL MISS YOU MICHAEL. YOU ARE THE KING FOREVER!!! I FEEL MICHAELS MOTHER SHOULD HAVE ALL 3 OF HIS CHILDREN BECAUSE THEY WILL HAVE THE LOVE THEY NEED FROM THE JACKSON FAMILY. MAY GOD BE WITH ALL OF HIS FAMILY THROUGH THIS SAD TIME. AND MAY MICHAEL REST IN PEACE. LOVE YOU FOREVER YOU ARE THE BEST EVER!! RHONDA HIGHFILL
michael was the best pop star of all and he will never be for fogoten i listend to michael wen i was 9 and im still listing he really wats my favrite dancer good bye michael jacks r.i.p
Like a lot of people, I grew up listening to the Jackson 5. My children know as much about nim as I do. To repeat what everyone says, He is the greatest pop artist in the World. It looks like the rest of the music industry would take a few pointers from him. You NEVER hear any cussing in his music, he didn't even call Billy Jean a hoe or a Bi---. It makes since that there's a lot more peple out there that buy the music that everyone can listen to. MJ's heart was too pure to put ugly in his mouth, cuz God don't like ugly.
The Hopi have a story about the Blue Kachina that will come and dance with us. And I believe that great dancer was Michael Jackson. He wasn't just talented in the worldly sense. He was more than that and I know that many people experienced that mystery about Michael Jackson.
Michael Jackson, in my opinion, is the great Dancer sent from heaven to help unite us right before a time of awakening. And I believe that time has come. We are all a little more awake now. We are searching for more world peace and compassion here at home.
No matter what they tried to say about Michael the truth of his character pervailed. And remember, many great individuals have been attacked. Many great individuals have had to endure the most horrible of accusations. Even Jesus Christ was nailed to a cross. If the people of this earth would do that to a son of God then what wouldn't they do to a gentle Dancer of Peace like Michael Jackson?
Michael Jackson, did a great deal with his wealth. And for those who would accuse him of spending, at least he was actively stimulating our economy. He gave a great deal for humanitarian efforts. And his legacy will be:
The Man who sang more beautifully than sirens. The Man who danced the dance of the Gods.
Alone with his voice and movements he captivated us and will live in our hearts forever.
Now he has returned to the mysterious cosmic energy from whence he came. And now he dances through the sky for all to see.
All we need do is look up at night and see our reflection in his glorious movements and we will make that change. We are all the men and women in his reflective mirrored soul. He asked us gently to make that change and in my heart I know we won't let him down.
The Beautiful Blue Dancer from Heaven who tried to teach us peace through all his trial and tribulations, this is no time to think of war, this is a time to give peace a chance.
Michael Jackson a name ringing sweet as nectar dances still, dances still, dancing forever.
I grew up listening to the Jackson 5 right from the start. They never faded - they just kept getting better and better. I consider myself very fortunate to grow up listening to their awesome sound.
Michael was a celebration of my life. There isn't one song he (or the Jacksons) has performed that I dislike. The Jackson family has made an enormous contribution to their country. What did one member of the family get for his contribution? Fiction. Pure fiction. People started calling him names and hence began the accusations and molestation trial.
For those people out there that want to remember Michael's controversial child molestation case - I say to you "get over it." You weren't there. Michael had money - big money, and that's the only reason why he was sued. If my son claimed that he was molested by anyone -I would want that person prosecuted - a jail term - not money, because money is not going to heal a molested child.
If Michael was murdered, I hope the authorties pay close attention and brings those involved to justice. I wouldn't dismiss his family's suspicions because they know him better than anyone.
So long Michael, you will live in my heart forever.
This man deserves to be remembered for his living legacy for his care, his heart and concern for this planet and the human condition. His one of kind talent in music, dance and pioneering in his craft will remain with all of us forever. There will never be another Michael Jackson, once in a lifetime. A gentle giant who helped many and gave millions to those in need, that is not often spoken of in the media, what a shame. We cannot continue to fill in the blank every time a celebrity does something we do not understand. Get the truth then decide. He was called weird because of:
Skin color ..... Vitiligo
Plastic surgeries.... in show business, not uncommon
Neverland..... compensating for his lost childhood
(however some would have us believe that he planned Neverland for a long time, gave millions in cash to under privileged children all in a scheme to abuse them ??)
His children..... has anyone thought that if in fact he is not the biological father may be in great part due to the fact that he did not want them to inherit his vitiligo, lupus, etc. Unfounded charges, parents of these children settled for money ????? What.!!!!!! Come on people we are smarter than that, RIP MICHAEL, YOU WILL LIVE IN OUR HEARTS FOREVER, WE MISS YOU !!!!!!!
We will alweys remember you. This is so sad...
I just have to share this article about MJ. Nothing beats this encounter with a kind soul. Let us remember the goodness he has done for mankind and the happiness his music brought to our lives...
Sunday, July 5, 2009, 5:43 PM
Manila Hotel's former PR officer Gwen Cariño writes about her close encounter with hotel guest Michael Jackson in December 1996.
When I was a PR officer at Manila Hotel, I was assigned to head the annual Orphan's Christmas Party where 300 children from different orphanages around Metro Manila were treated to a day of fun and surprises. It was one of the biggest projects on my plate and it was such a challenge to focus on work the day before the big event, knowing Michael Jackson was billeted in the hotel.
Two nights before, I had been fortunate to be part of his welcome line at the hotel lobby together with the rest of the PR and sales staff but was content enough to see him walk by.
The day before, a guy claiming to be Michael Jackson's aide from Mamarao Productions came to the office. I couldn't recall his name but he looked for the "person in charge" and said his boss had read the announcement about the event in the Dear Guest flyers we had circulated to all the rooms a week before. Michael wanted to know how he could help. His aide went up to the Penthouse and down to the PR office several times after we gave our suggestions.
Michael offered to fill up the 300 loot bags with goodies and toys, candies and chocolates. But after getting close to 50 sponsors, it was actually a problem for us to dispose of everything.
So I thought hard...how can the King of Pop meaningfully join the affair? I couldn't possibly have him be with the kids in the palayok game or the pabitin as he might end up being mobbed! And since the annual event was really all about giving, I mustered all my courage and told the Mamarao guy that the best thing I could think of was for Michael to literally be present to help distribute the loot bags, sign autographs and pose with the children for photos. "Wow, that may not be easy. You're talking about handing goodie bags to 300 children and I can just imagine the chaos. We'll see, Ms. Jacinto. I'll get back to you," he said.
Lunch break came and it was the most hurried one I ever took in my entire life. It wasn't until after 5 p.m. that Michael's aide came back and said, "Michael is more than happy to do whatever you suggest. How do we go about it tomorrow?"
I wanted to scream. I had to calm myself and regain composure as the Lizzie Maguire in me said, "Get real, get back into focus."
We agreed that Michael would join after the games, musical program and snacks, and at the last part to give out the loot bags. My colleague Annette Africano and boss Dulce Agnir requested for additional security around the garden and the stage area as this was where we decided to distribute the gifts. We made sure the children would form an orderly line.
Then the moment arrived. It was at the Champagne Gardens on Dec. 7, 1996. I was surprised to see him walking towards us, guided by his aide. Michael came up to me as I had to brief him.
"Hi, how are you? Thanks so much for letting me in, I know I'm early 'coz I didn't want to miss the program."
I said, "Are you kidding? Thanks so much for volunteering! Here's what Michael, why don't you just sit here and watch the musical numbers before we get into the gift giving. I will have to tweak the program a bit."
He replied, "Sure, anything you say... (pausing to look at my name tag) Gwen!" I was stunned at how incredibly sweet and modest he was. And in my mind it was, "Oh my God, this is really happening!"
Amazing how he patiently sat through the whole program. Carol Banawa, then an Ang TV mainstay couldn't believe MJ was watching her perform. She had her red blouse signed by him right after her number. Then followed Stefano Mori's dance number. Later, his back up singers and dancers came up on stage followed by select kids from different orphanages who danced to the beat of Billie Jean. Oh, the smile on Michael's face was just amazing.
Then we announced that Michael will be distributing gifts onstage. I explained to him that there's a loot bag for the younger kids and another for the older ones and he nodded. The thrill and excitement he gave those children was incredibly touching. It was in between the gift bag distribution that I caught a glimpse of MJ, not as a performer but as a person.
It was one in the afternoon. Santa Claus (David Endriga, a friend of fellow PR officer Francis Capistrano) was with us. The heat was scourging and I was worried that Michael felt so hot with his black long-sleeved signature attire and hat.
"Are you alright Michael? We can let you take a break," I asked.
He said, "I'm cool Gwen. Just imagine how Santa feels inside his velvet suit and beard. We'll be fine."
I never heard him complain or say a word about how hot it was or how long the line was. He had the most beautiful manners. He didn't even ask for a drink or a towel to wipe his sweat but one of our banquet staff made sure he got a glass of fresh orange juice.
An hour passed and we were halfway through gift-giving when we noticed that the garden was getting filled up. Suddenly, there were people from media, politicians, officials and hotel guests including those in a wedding reception at the nearby Champagne Room who deserted the newly-weds just to get a glimpse of the King of Pop.
"Oh oh, this isn't supposed to be, I'm so sorry," I said.
"It's all right, we'll get through it," Michael said smiling.
As we finished giving out the last loot bag to an 11-year-old orphan, a new line of more kids and adults formed. Michael's bodyguard, Wayne, said. "We can leave now."
Michael replied calmly, "We can't leave when there are still people in line. It's Christmas, dude."
I felt my heart beat faster and the hair on my arms and the back of my neck stood up. He wasn't just the most electrifying performer, but the most generous person.
One of the most memorable moments was when a lady came up to him for an autograph. Laughing and holding his tummy, he said "Hey Gwen, you've gotta check this out. He whispered, "It's a blank check. The lady is making me sign on a blank check."
We laughed hard and little did we know that it wasn't even half of the comedy. He later showed me and Wayne other stuff people would use or pick up on the ground when they couldn't find paper for him to sign on. One lady made him sign at the back of her elegant, designer Filipiniana gown. One teenager came up to him holding a dead leaf and another one, a popped balloon. Imagine how our laughter ballooned as well.
It was an amazing, genuine experience. At one point he asked if I was going to catch his History concert and I said "tomorrow night."
"Oh, you'll have a blast!" Michael told me.
At this point he became concerned about the stage as adults outnumbered the kids. His face had nervousness written all over it but he still didn't complain. He tapped the wooden floor with his foot several times making sure it was sturdy enough not to fall apart. "I've experienced the stage collapse and I just want to make sure we're all safe here," he explained.
Half of me wanted the line to finish because we were literally melting and worried about our safety, but half of me didn't, knowing that once the line ended, Michael will leave.
At some point it did end. I managed to get an autograph for my sisters and me before our general manager, Clem Pablo, requested him to sing Give Love on Christmas Day. Cesar Sarino, one of the hotel's officials, addressed his thank you note to the King of Pop. Then I saw his guards and aides whisking Michael off stage. I said in my mind, "Oh man, I didn't even have the chance to say goodbye."
Suddenly, I saw Michael return on stage and say, "Thanks so much to you and your team, Gwen. This really means a lot." Then he held me beside him and said, "I'll see you at the concert."
As Michael Jackson is laid to rest and returned to pristine condition in the afterlife, these two incredible acts of the King of Pop - volunteering for charity and unselfishly spending time with the less fortunate, will forever be the way I will remember this man.
I love seeing all of these photos of Michael Jackson and his family/friends. I am so sad that he is no longer with us here on earth.
I believe there is suspicious that his death was a cover up just as his father, Joe Jackson, does. It reminds me of the book Death Equity by Kimberly Bridges. Hospitals letting people die or causing them to so they get a HUGE donation. Some of the wealthy people are worth more dead than alive to hospitals. Scary thought if you or your loved one has to go in for surgery.
What is your death equity? Are you worth more dead than alive? Something to ponder.
This thriller would make a phenomenal movie.
RIP Michael..you are loved.