Michael Jackson

It was one of THOSE moments where you remember exactly where you were and what you were doing at the time.
I glanced at the online newspaper headlines for THIS headline to leap out and hit me right between the eyes!!

michael-jackson-diesMichael Jackson, the moonwalking former child star who became known the world over as the “King of Pop” before his life and career deteriorated in a freakish series of scandals, has died. He was 50.

A person with knowledge of the situation says Jackson died Thursday in a Los Angeles hospital. The person was not authorized to speak publicly and requested anonymity.

His death brought a tragic end to a long, bizarre, sometimes farcical decline from his peak in the 1980s, when he was popular music’s premier all-around performer, a uniter of black and white music who shattered the race barrier on MTV, dominated the charts and dazzled even more on stage.
Jackson’s 1982 album, “Thriller” still is the top-selling album of all time, and Michael Jackson was the top performer in the world through much of the 1980s. But somewhere along the way, Jackson went from the king of pop to wacko Jacko.

Some say it started with an accident during the filming of a TV commercial that burned his scalp severely and led to a dependence on prescription pain killers. He became an increasingly reclusive and odd figure.
He was married briefly to Elvis Presley’s daughter, then to his skin doctor’s assistant. Jackson was a father of three, despite ongoing speculation that they could not be his natural children. He sparked one of his many scandals when he dangled one of the children over a balcony, causing concern of his parenting skills.

All of those scandals paled to the ongoing suspicion of child abuse. He paid one boy more than $20 million to make his allegations go away, but it happened again one day in November 2003.

The charges stemmed from a documentary in which Jackson stated again his belief that having young boys in his bed was completely natural.

“It’s very right. It’s very loving. That’s what the world needs now,” Jackson said at the time.

Much of the world saw it differently. Jackson was arrested, handcuffed, booked and eventually stood trial. The court case was a surreal spectacle befitting Jackson’s bizarre way of life, including dancing on top of SUVS, pajamas worn to court, and a string of celebrities walking in and out of the courthouse in Santa Maria, California.

“Please keep an open mind and let me have my day in court,” Jackson said.

But the inconsistent testimony from the boy and his family members, including a truly bizarre five days on the stand from the boy’s mother, convinced the jury Jackson was not guilty. Still, the acquittal never completely put to rest the questions surrounding Michael Jackson., a curious figure who leaves behind a legacy of staggering musical genius, and stunningly bad judgment.

Jackson has kept a largely low profile in recent years but in March, he announced he would perform a series of London concerts scheduled for July.

Jackson was a master of memorable performances and a man whose real life remains a mystery. Michael Jackson also leaves legions of fans with an ongoing fascination with the one-time and some would say forever king of pop.

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