Tree of Eden

Huge crowd seen for star-packed Michael Jackson memorial | Reuters

Posted in Uncategorized by T.Salami on July 7, 2009

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Michael Jackson fans will crowd into downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday for a star-packed memorial to the King of Pop, whose sudden death nearly two weeks ago shocked the world.

Pop music singers Mariah Carey, Usher and Jennifer Hudson will mix with R&B veterans Smokey Robinson, Lionel Richie and Stevie Wonder while sports stars like Kobe Bryant and other celebrities such as Brooke Shields also are expected to turn out.

Some 18,000 fans and friends will crowd into the Staples Center sports arena and a nearby, overflow theater for the two-hour ceremony memorializing pop star Jackson, who died June 25 after suffering cardiac arrest in his Los Angeles mansion.

Police estimate more than 250,000 people will cram onto the sidewalks outside the arena to pay their final respects to the “Thriller” singer and one-time member of Motown legends the Jackson 5, who was 50 years old when he died.

“This is certainly a momentous occasion that is probably as big, if not bigger than, when Elvis (Presley) passed away,” said Steve Howard, a resident of Glendale, California, who won a ticket in an online lottery.

“The impact he had on American music and world music crossed all boundaries,” said Howard, who expects the service to feature performances by Jackson’s friends and fellow singers, along with eulogies for the fallen pop star.

Two people who will not be there are Jackson’s ex-wife, Debbie Rowe, who said on Monday her attendance might be a distraction, and longtime Jackson friend actress Elizabeth Taylor, who said she was asked to speak but was too overcome by grief.

via Huge crowd seen for star-packed Michael Jackson memorial | Reuters .

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