Bernice King, daughter of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., reflected on the uniqueness of Michael Jackson. "Throughout the ages, few are chosen amongst us to use their gifts and talents to demonstrate God's love in an effort to bring the world together in true sister and brotherhood," she said. "Michael was such the one."
Holding back tears, Brooke Shields recalls when she asked Michael Jackson "what's with the glove?" The actress went on to say Jackson was a "genius" and a "lover of life." The pair dated in the early 1980s and remained friends.
For Gen-Xers and Baby Boomers: Can you remember where you were when the song, "We are the World" first became popular? It came out in 1985 and was co-produced by Michael Jackson. The song brought out lots of emotion, and memories, both inside the Staples Center and outside with fans singing along.
This might be one of those songs you won't get out of your head later.
Musician Stevie Wonder reflected on Jackson's passing saying "as we may feel, and we do, that we need Michael here with us, God must have needed him far more." Wonder then went on to perform "I Never Dreamed You'd Leave in Summer" and "They Won't Go When I Go."
Say what you will, but the Rev. Al Sharpton spoke forcefully and eloquently about the King of Pop. He tells Michael Jackson's children that it "wasn't nothing strange about your Daddy. It was strange what your Daddy had to deal with. But he dealt with it anyway."
Give Sharpton some credit for acknowledging that some people did not like Jackson. Sharpton confronted this issue by being poetic, words that brought the crowd to its feet.
These A-list speakers have had time to craft their final words. Some have used humor. Some have tearfully told their personal relationship with the pop icon, like Brooke Shields. Some, like artist John Mayer, carefully take one of his songs and give their own tiny twist as if to tell Jackson, "Your songs cross music genres." That they do.
In addition to Queen Latifah's thoughts about Jackson, the actress also read a poem from Maya Angelou called "We Had Him." Angelou wrote that "he came to us from the creator, trailing creativity in abundance, despite the anguish of life he was sheafed in mother love."
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