Posted in ABC, Celebrity News, Funerals/Memorials, Good Morning America, Jacko, Joe Jackson, Katherine Jackson, King of Pop, Michael Jackson, Michael Jackson Memorial, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), NEWS, Paris Katherine Jackson, Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson

Just In: Joe Jackson Says Michael’s Kids Have Bright Futures

The elder Jackson praises Michael‘s daughter Paris, saying that he believes the young girl wants to do something in Hollywood show business.

On Friday, July 10, Joe Jackson had an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” during when he expressed his strong belief that Michael Jackson‘s children could have bright futures should they try their hands in showbiz. The elder Jackson especially made a reference to Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, who delivered a touching eulogy during Michael‘s memorial service earlier this week.

“I don’t know – I keep watching Paris,” he said in a statement, before then adding, “She … wants to do something.” Joe, moreover, also has his eyes on Prince Michael Jackson II a.k.a. Blanket, revealing “As far as I can see, well, they say Blanket, he can really dance. That’s what they’re saying. He can really dance.” Joe, however, made no mention of Michael‘s eldest son, Prince Michael Jackson Jr.

On the same interview, Joe was asked about whom he thinks should get the custody of Michael‘s children, and his response was, “The grandmother, Katherine, and I. There’s no one else to do what we can do for them. We should keep them all together and make them happy. And feed them like they’re supposed to be fed. And let them get rest … and grow up to be strong Jacksons.”

Since Michael‘s sudden death on June 25, his mother Katherine Jackson remains the children’s temporary legal guardian. Custody of Prince Michael Jackson Jr., Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, and Prince Michael Jackson II will be determined on a court hearing scheduled for July 20.

Source: AceShowbiz.com

Posted in Breaking News, Carrie Fisher, Christopher "Kriyss" Grant, Debbie Rowe, Dieter Wiesner, Dr. Arnold Klein, Elvis Presley, J. Randy Taraborrelli, Judge Mitchell Beckloff, Katherine Jackson, KFC, King of Pop, Lisa Marie, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), Miko Brando, Neverland Ranch, Paris Katherine Jackson, Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Princess Leia, Raymone Bain, Stephen Price, Stuart Backerman

Breaking News: The Jackson Kids In Full Detail

Michael Jackson‘s sudden death may give his three beloved children something he could never provide — a chance to be themselves.

At the Michael Jackson memorial Tuesday, the world met – and was deeply moved by – the King of Pop‘s 11-year-old daughter, Paris, who gave an unplanned, emotional tribute to her father.

For most of her life, Paris, and her brothers Prince Michael, 12, and Prince Michael II (a.k.a. “Blanket”), 7, were carefully shrouded from the public eye, often emerging with their father wearing colorful masks. So, who are the Jackson children?

According to family friend Gotham Chopra, the late star’s eldest son Prince is a “fun kid” who “has a lot of energy.” He describes Paris as “very thoughtful, very caring, and very sensitive” and quiet Blanket as “a lot like Michael.”

As PEOPLE reported in 2007, by all accounts, the kids are bright, well-behaved and seemingly well-adjusted. A spokesman from the National Zoo, who accompanied the family on a visit, told PEOPLE at the time, “I was struck by how considerate and nice and normal they all were.” Jackson’s longtime bodyguard Miko Brando recently echoed that sentiment. “They are well-mannered, well-behaved kids,” he said. “They are really level-headed.”

A Normal Dad…

It may seem like a contradiction, given their father’s staggering fame and highly scrutinized lifestyle, but many say that as a father, Jackson was nothing but normal and loving. “There were a few times he brought his kids to work,” says tour dancer Christopher “Kriyss” Grant. “You could tell by the way they looked at him that they adored him.”

Adds Jackson‘s former publicist Raymone Bain: “They were Michael’s first priority.”

The King of Pop devoted his life to creating a fairy-tale Never Neverland for his three young heirs, a world where the reality around them was hidden behind masks or the burly frames of professional bodyguards.

Prince Michael, Paris, and Blanket, have never attended a day of school. They’ve never known a neighborhood friend. They sleep together in the same room. And the only outsiders they know are strangers their father would bring in to entertain them.

Last Christmas Eve, Jackson and his dermatologist, Dr. Arnold Klein, — the suspected father of the two oldest children — arranged for Carrie Fisher to surprise the kids by reprising her role as Princess Leia in “Star Wars” at their rental mansion in Holmby Hills, Calif.

“Michael brought the kids down in their pajamas and said, ‘This is Princess Leia,’ ” said family friend Stephen Price. “They were so excited! She did her famous speech for them — the ‘Help me, Obi-Wan’ speech.”

“They are the greatest kids you’ll ever meet,” Price told Us Weekly of the Jackson kids. “They didn’t act like they had silver spoons in their mouths. They are nice and not Hollywood brats. Paris is very polite, a little reserved. Prince is the most outgoing. And Blanket is a sharp kid, but also pretty quiet. When I asked what he wanted for Christmas, he said, ‘I just want a stuffed animal.’ “

To entertain his kids, Jackson would often take them on midnight shopping sprees in stores specially opened just for them. They hopscotched around the globe from California to Las Vegas to Bahrain to Ireland to New Jersey to Switzerland.

He showered the children with indulgences. In 2007, he shut down parts of the New York, New York Hotel in Las Vegas so he and the kids could play video games and ride the roller coaster. And the kids would show up bleary-eyed at bookshops and toy stores around the world for private shopping sprees at 2 or 3 a.m.

They ate Jackson‘s favorite — KFC — for lunch and dinner.

“Prince I, Paris and Prince II were his life,” Michael‘s longtime pal Dieter Wiesner told Life & Style. “He made breakfast for them — a lot of people don’t know this side of Michael.”

Perhaps best of all from a child’s perspective — no school.

“I’m going to build a computer school on the grounds [of Neverland],” Jackson said in an interview. “How can they go into society? He’s Prince Michael Jackson. She’s Paris Katherine Michael Jackson. It would be too difficult.”

He also fathered by example — and showed them how to take responsibility for themselves, one record producer told Jackson biographer J. Randy Taraborrelli. Prince Michael once spilled popcorn on the studio floor, and the producer bent over to clean up the mess, fearing Jackson would have a diva-like tantrum.

Instead, the megastar apologized.

“He’s my kid. I’ll clean up after him,” Jackson said, according to Taraborrelli.

The producer recalled, “I looked down and there’s Michael Jackson on his hands and knees picking up his son’s popcorn. I’m not sure you would see Madonna doing that.”

Jackson did his best to prevent his kids from becoming brats, friends said.

“He wanted them to have a chance at a childhood which he never had,” friend Price recalled. “He wanted to make sure they played, because they are kids first and foremost. He made sure they were taken care of, but he understood the difference between a need and a want. He knew to give them a solid foundation to be good people, and that’s what I saw in these kids: bright, intelligent, good people.”

Others in Jackson‘s inner circle agreed.

“He wasn’t a disciplinarian but he didn’t let the kids run the roost or be spoiled rotten,” Stuart Backerman, a former adviser and publicist for Jackson from 2002 to 2004, told The Post.

He recalled a moment in 2004 when he walked through Neverland‘s kitchen and a 6-year-old Paris spit out her food — drawing a quietly stern reaction from Jackson.

“Michael looked up and told her, ‘We don’t spit out food and we don’t talk badly about other people in this house, and we have good manners,’ ” Backerman recalled.

“It didn’t mean anything to me at the time, but now as I look back, it reminds me what kind of parent he was.”

Jackson insiders say their eccentric father did his best to instill a steely self-confidence in his children.

Jackson‘s 11-year-old daughter, Paris Katherine, exemplified that strength when she took the microphone at his memorial service on Tuesday to say before a crowd of 20,000 — and millions watching worldwide — “Daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine.”

“Without getting over-mushy about it, it might have shown Jackson did a pretty damn good job raising those kids,” Backerman said. “She’s no shrinking violet, this kid, as you saw. She might have been hidden by veils and skulking around because of the privacy issues all these years, but she showed herself to be a maturing preteen girl.”

Still, there was much to be concerned about.

Elvis Presley‘s daughter, Lisa Marie, was Jackson‘s first wife and refused to have his babies.

She said that the King of Pop was too emotionally immature to raise a child. The two were divorced within two years of their marriage.

Prince Michael Joseph and Paris Katherine were born after Jackson‘s second wife, Debbie Rowe, the nurse at his dermatology clinic, was artificially inseminated.

Rowe played no part in the children’s lives, but she has hinted at a custody challenge in the wake of Jackson‘s death.

News reports have said the sperm donor may well have been Klein, Rowe‘s boss who has been oddly close to the children, although he denied those reports yesterday.

“We never saw [Rowe],” a Neverland staffer told Jackson biographer Taraborrelli of life after Prince Michael was born in 1997.

“The baby was cared for by a team of six nannies and six nurses, who worked in shifts so that there were always two nurses and two nannies by his side. They were kept under constant video surveillance, which was monitored by members of Jackson’s security team.

“The day team did exercise drills with the baby to build up his strength. The night team read and sang to him. But it was as if he had no mother,” Taraborrelli reported.

Another nanny said the air quality in Prince Michael’s room was measured hourly, all utensils were thrown away after every use, and toys were tossed each night to be replaced the next day.

Looking forward…

Prince, Paris and Blanket will continue to be well cared for. “The Jacksons have come together and are really loving the kids,” says Chopra. “Cousins and puppies are [around in] full-force, and the kids are enjoying [it].” And no matter what the public may have thought about Jackson, adds Bain, “his children will be his greatest legacy.”

Next Monday, Judge Mitchell Beckloff of Los Angeles Superior Court will hear Michael‘s mother Katherine Jackson‘s petition for permanent custody of the kids.

Sources: PEOPLE/NY Post

Posted in Just In, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), Paris Katherine Jackson, Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Stacy Brown, Staples Center

Just In: Prince Michael Jackson II (also known as Blanket) Exposed for the First Time

Blanket Jackson Exposed for the First Time…

Michael Jackson’s number one priority since the very moment each of his three children entered the world was to keep them covered and away from the spotlight that he himself had dealt with from such a young age, thus every jaw inside the Staples Center dropped to the floor on Tuesday as we heard daughter Paris speak for the very first time during her father’s memorial concert.

But that wasn’t the only major insight we had into the life of the Jackson children – we also saw Michael’s youngest, 7-year-old Blanket (who was infamously thrust over a fourth-floor balcony in Germany by his father back in 2002) uncovered for the first time. Wearing a dark suit and yellow tie just like his older brother, 12-year-old Prince Michael, Blanket clutched an MJ doll and joined the Jackson family onstage for the final performance of the show.

For the past twelve years, the singer went to extra-ordinary lengths to protect his kids faces by having them wear odd masks, hoodies and cover-ups. And while a couple of rare photographs revealing Paris and Prince Michael’s faces slipped thru the cracks, baby Blanket (who was born via a surrogate) was never fully exposed.

“Being part of the show was very good therapy for the children. They got to see firsthand what their father meant and the reaction his death has garnered throughout the world,” Jackson’s longtime family friend and biographer Stacy Brown told Tarts. “But I don’t think we can expect to see a lot of them. The Jackson family won’t exploit them and we know Michael wouldn’t want that.”

Check out more photos below…

Source: Via Fox News

Posted in Anil Kapoor, Brooke Shields, Celebrity News, Chris Tucker, Corey Feldman, Janet Jackson, Jermaine Dupri, Jermaine Jackson, Jesse Jackson, Joe Jackson, Just In, Katherine Jackson, Kim Porter, La Toya Jackson, Mariah Carey, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), Paris Katherine Jackson, Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Rev. Al Sharpton, Spike Lee, Todd Bridges, Usher, Wesley Snipes

Just In: Jackson’s Kids in Better Spirits at Post-Memorial Reception

https://i1.wp.com/www.usmagazine.com/files/jackson-b_5.jpgAfter Tuesday’s somber memorial for their father, Michael Jackson‘s three children seemed to be in better sprits at a reception immediately following the service.

Prince Michael, 12, Paris Katherine, 11, and Prince Michael II (Blanket), 7, all sat in the “VIP” area at a kid’s table that included all the Jackson cousins and relatives in The Grand Ballroom at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel.

There were around 15 kids at the table, with ages ranging from 7-17. (Blanket was probably the youngest in the group.)

Jackson‘s children seemed very close with their cousins, as they all were playing and goofing around.

At one point, Prince Michael pulled out his cell phone. It looked like he was playing a game on it; he then passed it along to one of his cousins.

Blanket – who appeared overwhelmed at the memorial – was in a much better mood. He looked like he was having so much fun chasing around his cousins. The boy – whose hair is almost down to his waist and whose front tooth is missing – appeared playful at the reception, tickling his cousins and tapping others on the shoulder and then running away.

Paris also seemed to be in a better mood. She hugged her cousins and chatted with guests.

At one point, someone brought over the program from the memorial and all three of the kids — including some of the cousins — gathered around to look at the pictures.

Jackson‘s children seemed really poised and polite as they shook guests’ hands and chatted with them. People were coming up and shaking Prince Michael‘s hand a lot. The kids interacted extremely naturally with each other.

Grace Rwaramba, Jackson‘s former nanny, was overheard saying: “The kids are holding up really well. It’s good for them to be around the other kids.”

The reception featured a classical music quartet that played softly onstage. (Food included mini cheeseburgers, spanakopita, mini crab cakes, vegetable plates, cheese plates and fruit.)

Todd Bridges, Corey Feldman, Chris Tucker, Brooke Shields, Wesley Snipes, Rev. Al Sharpton, Kim Porter, Mariah Carey, Jesse Jackson, Spike Lee and Anil Kapoor from Slumdog Millionaire were among the guests.

Usher pretty much kept to himself and still looked sad.

As for Jackson‘s siblings, Latoya made the rounds at the reception, greeting guests. Janet did not really interact with her family, only to chat with sister Latoya momentarily. (Both ladies kept their sunglasses on the entire time.) Janet also carried around Blanket‘s Michael Jackson doll for him. (Her beau Jermaine Dupri did not attend.)

Joe and Katherine Jackson briefly chatted up Brooke Shields, who was smiling but still mourning as her eyes were red.

Jermaine Jackson talked to family members and hugged a lot of the guests.

At the end of the evening, a few guests took photos with Wesley Snipes, Usher and even Joe Jackson.

Feldman, still dressed in his bizarre Michael Jackson outfit, gave Joe Jackson a hug and a handshake on the way out.

Michael‘s three kids left with Katherine Jackson, who remains their temporary guardian until a July 13 court hearing.

Source: US Weekly

Posted in Berry Gordy, Breaking News, Funerals/Memorials, Janet Jackson, Ken Erlich, King of Pop, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), Music News, Paris Katherine Jackson, Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Smokey Robinson, Usher, Wire Talk

Wire Talk: Paris Jackson’s Memorial Comments Wasn’t Planned, It Came From The Heart

https://i1.wp.com/www.usmagazine.com/files/paris-b_3.jpgAs the star-studded tribute to the King of Pop concluded, Michael Jackson’s own children, Prince Michael, 12, Paris Katherine, 11, and Prince Michael II (Blanket), 7, took the stage during a group performance of “Heal the World.”

The climactic moment of Tuesday’s Michael Jackson memorial service came when after the song, 11-year-old Paris Jackson gave an impromptu speech from the stage surrounded by the Jackson family. Paris stepped to the mic and spoke through tears: “Ever since I was born, daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine,” she said. “And I just want to say that I love him so much.”

Her aunt Janet Jackson then took her into her arms for a hug before the entire Jackson family left the stage, closing the service that lasted more than two hours. The moving tribute was especially startling because it marked one of the first times Michael’s daughter has ever been heard publicly.

Ken Erlich, the producer of the memorial, has told EW that the moment was in no way planned. “A lot of the show was not scripted,” he says. “A lot of the speakers spoke from their heart. We told them we’d be happy to work with them, but a lot of them — the Smokeys, the Berry Gordys, the people who knew Michael all his life — wanted to speak from the heart, on their own. When [the Paris moment] happened, I had asked the family to come up if they wanted to and say something. I thought, frankly, that we were going to get the brothers and the sisters. This went way beyond that, obviously.”

Erlich also reports that the moment when Usher left the stage to sing “Gone Too Soon” next to Jackson‘s casket was similarly impromptu. “He did that on his own and it was wonderful,” says the producer. “All we had time to do with this show is create the sense of it. The rest of it happened because we allowed it to happen. We didn’t want to get in the way.”

More photos of the kids below…

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Singing to “We Are The World”Above: You notice that Blanket dresses like Michael used to dress, with the high-water pants, white tube socks and penny loafer shoes. Check out the photo I put below to compare.

Michael - Blanket

Prince Michael:

Paris:

Blanket:

Posted in Debbie Rowe, Grace Rwaramba, Janet Jackson, Just In, Katherine Jackson, King of Pop, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson

Just In: Michael Jackson’s nanny Speaks Out!

In Jackson’s employ for more than a decade, Grace Rwaramba started as an office assistant to the pop star before becoming a nanny to his three children: Prince, now 12; Paris, 11; and Blanket, 7. She was last fired by Michael in December, and claims that when she visited the children in April, she herself had to buy balloons for Paris’s birthday, because Michael was so broke.   “Michael had no idea about money,” Rwaramba says, citing a $1 million offer he received to appear in Japan. “By the time everyone took their share,” she says, “he ended up with $200,000.” In another line she said that routinely had to pump out the singer’s stomach after he’d ingested a dangerous combination of drugs. “I had to pump his stomach many times. He always mixed so much of it,” Rwaramba tells The Times of London, referring to drugs.

“There was one period that it was so bad that I didn’t let the children see him,” she is quoted as saying. “He always ate too little and mixed too much.” “For the record, Grace never pumped Michael’s stomach.She has no idea how she would even do such a thing,” Chopra spiritual teacher, medical doctor and Jackson’s longtime friend. He also says of Rwaramba, “Grace is more than my best friend,I refer to her as my sister.”

Having now arrived in Los Angeles from London, Rwaramba, who is originally from Rwanda,is expected to be interviewed by LAPD detectives investigating Jackson’s death on Thursday, according to People. Rwaramba at one point proposed a famliy drug intervention for Michael in Vegas, and went so far as to contact his mother Katherine and sister Janet for their help with it. But when Michael found out about her efforts, he fired her. “He didn’t want to listen,” she says, “that was one of the times he let me go.”

https://i0.wp.com/j.bdbphotos.com/pictures/R/5/R5T8H8.jpgAccording to Rwaramba, on Friday, the day after Michael died, his mother Katherine called her from Michael’s Holmby Hills house and asked where he kept his cash. “She said, ‘Grace, the children are crying. They are asking about you. They can’t believe that their father died. Grace, you remember Michael used to hide cash at the house. I am here. Where can it be?” Rwaramba advised looking “at the garbage bags and under the carpets.” Then, said the former nanny, “She said, ‘Grace, where are you? Come. I will pick you up from the airport.’ She sounded so strong. So strong!” Katherine Jackson grandmother announce that she will grow the kids but now Debbie Rowe ex wife wants the kids after she give up jacko_rowethe custody for her kids for 8.4 Millions $. “They are not Michael’s children artificially inseminated by an anonymous donor, I never had sex and did not share a bed during the three year marriage.” Money really can change you…

People close to him, his family they will lie about him on interviews for money, so who really cries for him? Who really loved him? Only fans? Money really can change people.

For more about Michael, click here.

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“Who should get the kids? The grandparents, the nanny, the ex-wife, or other and if other who?

Posted in Debbie Rowe, Just In, Katherine Jackson, King of Pop, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Michael Joseph Jr., Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson

Just In: Michael Jackson Update

Massive demand for Jackson memorial tickets…

https://i0.wp.com/www.hotgossip.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/10/michaeljacksontour.jpg

More than half a million fans from around the world applied for 17,500 free tickets to Michael Jackson‘s public memorial service next week, organizers said on Friday as a massive security operation got underway.

The life and music of the self-proclaimed “king of pop,” who died of sudden cardiac arrest last Thursday, will be celebrated on Tuesday at the Staples Center, a basketball arena in downtown Los Angeles.

Officials on Friday unveiled an ambitious online lottery that will allow fans to attend either the televised service at the arena or watch the proceedings on a big screen at the nearby Nokia Theater.

But within minutes, the staplescenter.com server crashed. Officials warned additional disruptions were likely as fans logged on ahead of the Saturday deadline at 6 p.m. PDT.

“You might want to consider watching this from the comfort of your own home,” said Los Angeles City Councilwoman Jan Perry, who is doubling as the city’s acting mayor.

The ceremony will also streamed online.

A wide area around the venues in downtown Los Angeles will be blocked off for the 10 a.m. event. Both local and state law-enforcement agencies have been marshaled for duty.

A local news-radio station reported that more than 1,400 officers from the Los Angeles Police Department alone have been asked to volunteer for duty on Monday and Tuesday. The LAPD, which has about 9,000 officers in total, declined to comment on the report or to reveal a staffing number.

A Jackson family spokesman also declined to provide details of the memorial service, but said there would not be a funeral procession and Jackson’s body would not be at the memorial.

Funeral arrangements have not been disclosed, but security has been beefed up at the Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills mortuary, where his body is believed to be held.

Officials were also tight-lipped about the cost of the memorial service, and who would pay for it.

Like other U.S. cities, Los Angeles is strapped for cash in the global recession and similar questions about public tax revenues being spent for such an elaborate ceremony surfaced last month when a $2 million celebration was given for the champion Los Angeles Lakers professional basketball team.

That event, which attracted over 500,000 people, was eventually funded through private donations.

The city has already budgeted for LAPD overtime, Perry said, adding that officials would “deeply appreciate” help to offset incremental costs, such as transportation, sanitation and staging.

Winners of the tickets will be contacted on Sunday and directed to pick up a pair of tickets and wristbands on Monday. No tickets will be sold. The massive demand raised the question of counterfeiting or scalping, drawing pleas from organizers for fans to act responsibly.

“For those that would try to take advantage of this, shame on them,” said Tim Leiweke, the president and CEO of AEG, the closely held entertainment concern that owns the venues and was backing Jackson‘s planned comeback concerts in London.

Jackson‘s last performance was at the Staples Center. The night before he died of sudden cardiac arrest last Thursday, he rehearsed for the tour at the venue.

Plus More>>

Jackson was loving and attentive father, many say…

https://i2.wp.com/www.mikepaulblog.com/blog/media/_38493705_jackson_children300_reu.jpg

When Rabbi Shmuley Boteach brought his children to play with Michael Jackson‘s kids at Neverland Ranch some eight years ago, the rabbi‘s youngsters naturally made a beeline for the fabulous rides — the Ferris wheel, the roller coaster, the bumper cars.

But when Jackson‘s own kids asked to go on the rides, he gently reminded them of the family rules, according to Boteach: The rides were only for birthdays or special occasions. “He was very concerned that the kids grow up with the right values,” says Boteach, Jackson‘s former friend and spiritual adviser.

They are the children of one of the most famous men to have walked the planet. But unlike other children of mega-celebrities, whose faces are recognizable around the world, those of Jackson‘s three kids — 12-year-old Michael Joseph Jr., known as Prince Michael; 11-year-old Paris Michael Katherine; and 7-year-old Prince Michael II, known as Blanket are barely known.

Home-schooled and often isolated in mansions or hotels, the children have appeared only in rare paparazzi shots, their faces usually covered by scarves or brightly colored masks.

That fact alone — that Jackson sought to hide his children’s faces — would seem to speak of a dark, strange life. But those who’ve witnessed the family up close paint a brighter picture: a trio of engaging, intelligent, well-adjusted youngsters who adored their father. A father who, despite his eccentricities and the terrible controversy that surrounded him in later life, lived for his children and tried to make their lives as normal as — well, as normal as Michael Jackson could.

“To the extent that Michael Jackson’s kids COULD have a normal life, he wanted them to have it,” says Boteach, who eventually fell out with Jackson.

“Listen, I’m not here to whitewash the sins of Michael Jackson— he was accused of some abominable things,” says the rabbi, referring to the pop star’s trial and acquittal on molestation charges. “But when it came to being a father, there was much to admire.”

Dr. Tohme Tohme, a close friend and adviser to Jackson over the last year of his life, said he had “never seen a better father.”

“He was the father and the mother,” Tohme said. “He washed them and dressed them. I’m a father but I’m not sure I could do what he was doing with his children. They loved him so much.”

Of course, even Jackson‘s closest friends are at a loss to explain what for many is the single most memorable image of Jackson as a father: the shocking moment when he dangled Blanket, then an infant, over a hotel balcony in Berlin, showing the baby off to fans with a delighted grin.

“What made that incident so inexplicable was that he was an OVER-protective father,” Boteach says.

Others who’ve been close to Jackson in the past agree. When the children stayed in hotels, says one photographer who spent several years working for Jackson, his handlers had long lists of all the foods the children could and could not eat. He was afraid of allergies but also poisoning, says the photographer, Ian Barkley. At the ranch, Jackson would not let the children roam far for fear of coyotes, he says.

When Barkley spoke to the kids himself, he was impressed. “Paris and (the older) Prince really blew me away with how smart they were. They were really well-mannered and nice.” And Jackson made sure they kept up with their studies. “Once I heard him ask the nanny if the kids had done their homework that day, and they hadn’t yet and he was really not happy.”

Yet Jackson also indulged his children in extravagances — he was known to rent out entire movie theaters so he and his kids could see a first-run movie in peace, said close friend Uri Geller, the entertainer, who accompanied the family on one such outing.

“The times I’ve seen Michael with his kids, he was simply a great father,” says Geller. “When I saw him alone in London, the first thing he said is how much he missed them. I know he loved them, and they loved him.”

US Weekly editor Janice Min, whose magazine reported on Jackson‘s children this week, was surprised to discover how positive an outlook many Jackson associates had on the kids and their lives. “I would have thought it was a very gloom-and-doom picture, but across the board, everyone talked about these nice and seemingly normal kids,” she says.

Still, for many people, the hardest thing to get past about Jackson‘s parenting style was those facial disguises. Geller, for one, is convinced the family saw it as a game. “It was a private joke on the media between Michael and the kids — the kids loved it,” Geller says. “That’s what Michael told me.”

But others speak of more serious reasons. Stacy Brown, a former Jackson family confidant who fell out with the family at the time of the 2005 molestation trial — he was a prosecution witness — says Michael was truly afraid of kidnapping. But also, Brown notes, there was a strategy: If the kids wore masks when they were with Jackson, they could go safely unmasked when they weren’t with him.

Still, says Brown, who co-wrote “The Man Behind the Mask,” a Jackson biography, “mentally, it was just not right. Why put a mask on these beautiful children?”

There may be another, more poignant reason. “He detested the media interest in whether he looked like his children,” says Boteach, the rabbi. “I think that was another concern. Those rumors were hurtful to them.”

Such discussion has only increased since Jackson‘s death, as the world wonders not only who will get custody of the children but also whether Jackson is their biological father. Jackson‘s ex-wife, Deborah Rowe, the mother of the two older children, says the children were conceived by artificial insemination. The surrogate mother of the youngest has not been revealed.

For now, Rowe is weighing whether to seek custody of her two children, while Katherine Jackson, the singer’s 79-year-old mother, has temporary guardianship of all three. Jackson‘s will asks that permanent custody go to his mother.

Brown, the biographer, recalls running into Jackson and the kids in a town near Neverland shortly before the trial.

“They were the most well-behaved, well-mannered, immaculately groomed children,” Brown says. “It was all ‘please’ and ‘thank you,’ and ‘excuse me.’ Little Blanket was wearing a kilt, and Prince a three-piece suit, and Paris a white dress with blue flowers. We chatted. I’m telling you, the guy was tremendous with those kids.”

Whatever happens, Boteach says, it was Jackson‘s greatest wish that his children know how much he loved them.

“Michael often said he knew that when the kids grew up, they’d be asked by biographers what kind of father he was,” Boteach says. “He wanted the kids to know that he always put them first.”

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Jackson kids face hurdles to coping with his death…

https://i2.wp.com/img.metro.co.uk/i/pix/2009/04/jacksonfamilyBAR_450x370.jpgNo matter how unusual their lives may have been so far, Michael Jackson‘s children now face a universal trauma felt by all kids who suddenly lose a parent.

How the three young Jacksons fare is up to the remaining adults in their lives and whether they can create a sense of stability and security for the grieving youngsters, mental health experts say.

The challenges are particularly daunting for the Jackson kids, with no mother in the picture, custody issues, and unanswered questions ranging from Jackson‘s suspected drug use to whether he was even their biological father.

That’s not to mention the eccentricities before Jackson‘s death, such as his Peter Pan fixation and drastic cosmetic surgeries, plus unproven allegations of sexual behavior with other children.

The public knows little about the sheltered children_ Michael Jr., 12; Paris, 11; and Prince Michael II, 7. They were all born long after Jackson‘s heyday, and he kept them veiled — sometimes literally — from prying eyes. Whether they are resilient or particularly vulnerable to emotional trauma is unknown.

One thing is certain: “The loss of a parent is a catastrophe” for any young child, and the Jackson kids will need help coping, said Dr. Stuart Goldman, a psychiatrist with Children’s Hospital Boston and Harvard Medical School.

“The kids need to be removed from the limelight and any exposure to television or media needs to be greatly minimized,” said Dr. Louis Kraus, chief of child and adolescent psychiatry at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. “The distortions of what they see there is not going to be healthy.”

Jackson‘s will names his 79-year-old mother, Katherine Jackson, as the children’s guardian. Since Jackson‘s June 25 death, they have been staying with her and other relatives at the family compound in Encino, a Los Angeles suburb.

An attorney for Jackson‘s cardiologist said the children requested and were allowed to see Jackson‘s body, after a psychiatrist was consulted.

Specialists say that isn’t necessarily traumatizing. It can give children a chance to say goodbye after a parent’s sudden death, and allow the permanence of death to sink in, said Demy Kamboukas, a trauma expert and scientist at New York University’s Child Study Center.

Kamboukas and other mental health experts recommended counseling for children who’ve experienced a parent’s death. It gives them a chance to talk about their feelings with an objective observer who isn’t also grieving and who can assure them that feelings of fear, anger and loss of control are normal.

Many kids get over profound grief and end up handling a parent’s death pretty well, said University of Chicago psychiatrist Dr. Sharon Hirsch.

The Jackson children may be able to, also, she said, “as long as the family rallies around them and helps to continue to love and support them.” But, she added, “It isn’t going to be easy.”

Source Via OMG!