June 25th, 2009
09:05 PM ET

Michael Jackson's Life: A timeline

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/05/20/michael.jackson.tour/art.jackson.gi.jpg caption="Michael Jackson, music legend, died today at the age of 50"]

Program Note: For more on Michael Jackson's life, legacy, and sudden death, tune in tonight,  AC360° at 10 p.m. ET


Michael Jackson, one of the most popular entertainers of the past century and the "King of Pop," died Thursday, June 25, and after suffering sudden cardiac arrest, CNN has confirmed.

Click through the timeline to read more about Jackson's life, much of which has been spent in the public spotlight.

Keep reading...

Filed under: 360° Radar • Michael Jackson
soundoff (150 Responses)
  1. Eugenia - San Francisco, Ca

    Ok, I don’t understand. I was driving home listening to the radio when I heard the news about Jackson and the DJ was sad.

    Why would anyone feel sad that a child molester has died?

    Our society makes me ill sometimes, the people we put on pedastools.

    Just because people loved his music, you have to be kidding.

    It’s like loving OJ because he was a good football player, Right?

    June 25, 2009 at 8:38 pm |
  2. Jeanette

    I agree with you Eugenia, Farrah was loved by many but would not generate as many viewers as the molester.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:36 pm |
  3. PrettyJewels

    I was shocked to hear this! as everyone else.
    Our prayers are really with his family that he leaves behind and his children .
    And Yes, the same goes to Farrah and her family and children.
    I hear a press conference is starting soon.
    Weird how these things bring people together .

    June 25, 2009 at 8:35 pm |
  4. MsRhonda

    STOP SPECULATING ON HIS DEATH. Stop talking about all of the unproven allegations that unfortunately impacted this man for a period of time and remember Michael Jackson for what he has brought to all of us. The beautiful music he and his brothers sung which touched us in so many ways; his extraodinary talent; his soul and his love for people. Michael Jackson was AN EXCEPTIONAL MAN and you should memorialize him as such.

    Remember this song "Man In The Mirror" and take a hard look at yourselves and your own lives and stop passing judgement.

    Michael Jackson you may now rest in PEACE!!!

    June 25, 2009 at 8:34 pm |
  5. Marta Campos

    Prayers for Jackson's families, same for Fawcett's relatives, but I almost die when I heard the news today that Democracy it is in jeopardy in my beloved country Honduras, it's ... so sad, so sad!

    June 25, 2009 at 8:33 pm |
  6. Susan Middleton

    Please don't neglect Farrah in all the coverage of Michael Jackson. Both were well known celebrities...with their own fans! I have heard several CNN people speak as if Farrah's death is not worth talking about due to the Michael's death. Can't we remember both...he was a talent all his life and she was a beauty and an icon in her own right. A lady, who in the final years, showed incredible grace, faith and taught all of us a thing or two about facing the end of life. She deserves to be remembered.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:29 pm |
  7. Jay

    My heart goes out to the Jackson family, but something doesn't feel right about their long-time friend and lawyer, Brian Oxman. The way he brought up medication abuse by Michael was awkward.

    Before he called into CNN, I was hoping there would be an official investigation into Michael’s death. How easy it would be for someone to kill him and then blame it on health or medication because of the rumors that have surrounded Michael most of his life. The way Brian Oxman insisted on talking about medication abuse, even though the anchor tried repeatedly to respectfully change the subject, makes me wonder if he’s setting up the cover story for a murder.

    I do hope there will be a thorough investigation.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:29 pm |
  8. Lisa

    So sad. I'm 48 and grew up with the Jackson 5 and Mj. My 20 yr old daughter also grew up with him a little differently but we're both sad. I learned to really dance to Billy Jean. RIP MJ!

    June 25, 2009 at 8:28 pm |
  9. Melina

    I come home to get the coverage on CNN about Michael Jackson's shocking death. To my great dissapointment at about 4;45 – 5;00p.m. I here not one but all 3 commentators on your station talking about his legal/molestation court issues. (this was shortly after Reverand Sharpton's great tribute to him.) Please, why today? Can't we as a society just simply respect the dead?? Today was not the day for that discussion- mabey tommorow but not today. Get over the need to talk about negativity, remember the good he did for kid's, "We Are the World",etc., etc. We all already know the history – now can we appreciate the pure talent? just for the day?
    Thank you.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:27 pm |
  10. Joel Banjo-Johnson

    I love Michael Jackson and is and will always be a true loyal fan. He is THE GREATEST. For years he faced ridicule and abuse but his fans always stood by him–Standing by and always standing strong. A TRUE Legend.

    Michael Jackson is THE WORLD IDOL
    Love you Michael!

    June 25, 2009 at 8:24 pm |
  11. Kristi Little

    This is a sad day. I am upset by the stir about the possiblity of rx med abuse. The stress of being in the lime light your entire life will at some points in your life wear on you. Imagine having people in manic crowds faint at the sight of you wherever you go. His fame is uparalleled and if you think people like you and me can suffer from stress and take strong meds then he probably could too. I think it was wrong and inappropriate for the family spokesperson to say such comments. Distracting the media into a frenzy of alligations and speculation when we should spend at least these first few moments remembering his amazing life! this shouldn't be a circus not now.

    Kristi Little

    June 25, 2009 at 8:21 pm |
  12. Rany Ibrahim

    Its a sad day indeed for Music World. Michael Jackson was a legend. His legacy was Global and went strong through time and place. I remember growing up in the Middle East and influenced by his music, waiting for his albums. regardless to his strange behaviors lets remember him as the Great Entertainer he was.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:20 pm |
  13. gail fonrose

    i grew up trying to be like micheal jackson it is sad that he is gone.like his song said gone to soon.RIP mj. and farrah fawcett ilove u both u will be missed

    June 25, 2009 at 8:20 pm |
  14. Alphonso Nall

    First of all my heart goes out to the extended Jackson family along with my sincere condolences. Is it just me or does it seem that events happen in three's. Meaning, Ed Mcmahon, Farrah Fawcett, & now Michael Jackson. 🙁

    June 25, 2009 at 8:20 pm |
  15. Jesus

    When Michael sang the song Ben it made me cry and looking back at the lerics of the song it seem as he was singing that song to me . Today we lost an American Icon.

    here is the some of the leric to the song

    Ben, the two of us need look no more
    We both found what we were looking for
    With a friend
    to call my own
    I'll never be alone
    And you, my friend, will see
    You've got a friend in me
    (you've got a friend in me)

    Good bye friend rest in peace.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:19 pm |
  16. Angela

    Anderson...no you didn't ask whay were the people gathering at UCLA Medical. You should not be reporting if you cannot understand the iconic stature of Michael Jackson. You haven't seen anything yet. They are adoring fans and their simply doing what fans do...paying their RESPECT!

    June 25, 2009 at 8:18 pm |
  17. concern/denver Colorado

    Michael will be so missed ..in so manys different ways This is a great lost for the world and even greater for the USA ..One of the best single and group entertainers ...

    June 25, 2009 at 8:16 pm |
  18. Dave

    Are Iran and North Korea now stable?
    I have not heard anything about them at all since this afternoon...

    It is time to get back to the REAL NEWS!
    Leave Michael (and Ed and Farrah) alone.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:15 pm |
  19. jill, bay area, Ca

    Where are Michael's children? How come nothing is being said about them?

    June 25, 2009 at 8:13 pm |
  20. Kimball Sterling

    I heard someone say a few minites ago that an atopsy would be performed tomorrow. If I recall back in the mid 1980s Jackson was one of the first to state he he would have his body frozen hoping someday to come back to life. it was a big story then. Anybody remember that? I r ecall him paying about 50k for this process years ago. Crynology?

    June 25, 2009 at 8:12 pm |
  21. John K.

    Unreal, I still have chills up my spine thinking about his passing, he was the real Peter Pan.. enjoy Neverland buddy!

    We'll Miss You~

    June 25, 2009 at 8:11 pm |
  22. Frances

    Mr. Jackson was NEVER the same after the Pepsi mishap. If I had to guess, I would say that was ground zero for his prescription medication addiction. It was probably the start of his "trying to capture youth" psychology that took him down a dangerous, bizarre and strange road as well. So sad...

    June 25, 2009 at 8:11 pm |
  23. Dee

    I really believe he was never meant to grow old. He was on loan to us, a special gift. And now he has been called home.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:08 pm |
  24. Caroline Jackson

    I thought it was very disrespectful the way Katie responded to Larry King's to pay respect to Farrah Fawcett passing and her death being over shadowed my Michael's death. She certainly has lost our respect when just she just responded with "may she rest in peace" and went right back to talking about Michael.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:07 pm |
  25. Lilibeth

    Today is a very sad day indeed. First Farrah Fawcett, now Michael Jackson. When the news was confirmed, well, what can I say, I just couldn’t believe it. I grew up listening to his music. His talent was simply unmatched. My thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones. May he rest in peace.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:06 pm |
  26. Susan

    So sad today. Loved Michael, loved his music, his generousity... None of us are perfect and very few of us are genius.. The magnitude of his talent was so wonderful. I went into a bakery for lunch one day and they were playing his Best Hits and everybody was singing and happy! That's what he did amongst so much more...

    He will be dearly missed.....

    June 25, 2009 at 8:05 pm |
  27. Helen, Reading, UK

    It's extremely sad news, to have lost two icons like Michael and Farrah on the same day. I was lucky enough to see him perform at Wembley Stadium back in the early 90's, and he certainly put on one hell of a show. I also recall when his friend Uri Geller renewed his wedding vows. Uri lived near to my home town and his wife often came into the bank that I worked at. It was rumoured that Michael was going to be best man, so we were all on tenterhooks, waiting to see if he popped in to cash a traveller's cheque! Hope that he can at last find peace, my thoughts go out to his kids and family, also to Farrah's. RIP both of you.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:05 pm |
  28. yinka yinka

    Micheal was the good for some (idol, icon, phylanthropist, and bad for other, if you know what I mean. But out of all his legacies, his children and family are left after him. I really sympathize with his mother and children. Even his sibblings will be able to move on. But the children will never have another dad, and mother looses part of her soul each time she looses a child. May his soul rest in peace, but may his children be able to carry on peaceful and fulfilling lives, and may God protect them and comfort.

    June 25, 2009 at 8:03 pm |
  29. atim

    I always thought in my sub-conscious that Micheal was immortal. I mean we all die one day but i just always thought i would have gone before he went. R.I.P Micheal you were the best

    June 25, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  30. Eugenia - San Francisco, Ca

    Shouldn't Farrah be up there with Michael on CNN.com? What she doesn't generate as much viewers as the molester?

    June 25, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  31. daniel

    i love u michael forever!

    June 25, 2009 at 7:59 pm |
  32. Christine, Tennessee

    I remember going to see Michael Jackson when I was young. He came to the little town of Knoxville Tennessee to perform. My dad took me and my 4 sisters. What a sight we were. These teenager girls with their daddy. We loved it. It was a great time. RIP Michael. We love you and will always remember "Thriller" and the Jackson 5.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:58 pm |
  33. Jessie Baker

    A piece of my youth has died today....My children will know his songs and when they sing them....I will smile....Peace, M.J.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:56 pm |
  34. Michelle

    I am totally stunned by the news of the death of Michael Jackson.
    He is the 1st person I saw in concert. I though Off The Wall and
    Thriller were just amazing. Right now I am trying to come up with
    a list of his top 10 videos. Of course, Thriller is the top choice ,next
    would have to be Billie Jean.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:55 pm |
  35. Ramona

    @Emmett Such a sad day, both losses, FF and MJ; thanks for your inspiration; a little humor, I needed that. My heart goes out to both of their families.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:54 pm |
  36. sam, tn

    his family is in my prayers..........rip king of pop:(

    June 25, 2009 at 7:54 pm |
  37. Cynthia, NC

    I am still in shock over the fact that Michael Jackson has passed away. He was a pop icon in not only my childhood but my adult life as well. I choose to remember him as the Michael Jackson from my high school days rather than the person many of us came to know over the last fifteen years or so. May he rest in peace.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:52 pm |
  38. Andrew

    What a day we are having! What is going on????
    Jeff Goldblum pronounced DEAD today in New Zealand

    3 celebs dead

    June 25, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  39. Michael Then

    Put all his personal problems aside and anyone born in the 60's,70's,80's can't deny that he was the greatest entertainer of our time RIP Michael Jackson

    June 25, 2009 at 7:50 pm |
  40. Jasmine

    we never really understand the power of a person's work until they are dead, but Michael Jackson was an exception.

    Rest in Peace Michael.... 🙁

    June 25, 2009 at 7:39 pm |
  41. BettyAnn,Nacogdoches,TX

    Willie Nelson and Ray Price are still singing at almost 80. I can NOT believe that Michael Jackson is dead.
    I have his 45's!!!
    What a complex confused and excessively talented human.
    I am shocked.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  42. Isabel, Brazil

    We lost a legend of the music world. Despite all the problems that Jackson had, nobody can deny the contribution he gave to the music, dance and behavior of a generation.

    Today we lost much of a our generation and youthfulness... and of my adolescence

    Michael Jackson was the best!
    Michael Jackson will always be an idol.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:30 pm |
  43. Annie Kate

    Wow. I can't believe it – Michael Jackson dead. It reminds me of when Elvis died – you just couldn't believe the news was true. I guess Michael has finally had his last curtain call.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:29 pm |
  44. Cindy

    The LA coroner just confirmed Michael died. So very sad to hear!! He will be very, very missed! He was an excellent talent and there will be no one like him again! Once again I say my thoughts and prayers go out to his family. And PLEASE media..leave his children alone!!


    June 25, 2009 at 7:28 pm |
  45. Derrick Jackson

    This news is incredibly shocking and disturbingly sad. Michael Jackson is now Elvis. Its sad for America.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:28 pm |
  46. Sandra Robertson, GA

    My thoughts and prayers are with the Jackson family during their most difficult days ahead and to the world of fans who loved him like family, may we all join together in remembrance of Michael's short life and the God given gift he shared with the world.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:25 pm |
  47. Emmett Simmons

    The heavenly transporter of blessed souls had not moved for a few hours awaiting a notable passenger. Suddenly, a cavalcade of angels appeared escorting a beautiful woman. She stepped into the transported and was greeted by the driver, "welcome aboard Ms. Fawcett". She smiled and said
    "I'm glad to be here, when do we leave". The driver replied that it was not his
    determination, but that of St. Peter.
    After a few hours, there was an extreme sound of fluttering wings as another cavalcade of angels appeared. The person escorted stepped into the the transported and was greeted by the driver, "welcome aboard Mr. Jackson." Micheal replied, "thank you, the trip was unexpected, I appreciate you waiting." The driver replied, "you are welcome, but the determination was that of St. Peter. He said, "now we will be on our way.
    When the transported arrived at the "Pearly Gates of Heaven" St. Peter was standing there. He said " I want to welcome you both to Heaven. I have someone here that has been awaiting your arrival.
    Farrah and Micheal looked and to their surprise they so Ed McMahon. Micheal spoke to Ed saying "it was nice of you to wait here for us." Ed replied, "do you think that I would miss the opportunity to say HE....RE..... IS..

    A thought of inspiration and humor that I wanted to share with you, if you so desire, you may pass it one.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:21 pm |
  48. Kendra Burley

    I feel deeply heart broken about Michaels Jackson . I was wondering if he still had his kid. If it's true that he's dead I am wondering what's going to happen with his kids.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:19 pm |
  49. Loretta

    Okay, Michael Jackson is gone. The fans that have been his fans since the Motown 25th anniversary special have been saying goodbye to him slowly for years and years. My wish would be for the press to leave his family alone and let them say goodbye in a peaceful way. At last maybe now he can rest. I'll always have his music and that was his gift to us. LEAVE THE REST OF IT ALONE.

    June 25, 2009 at 7:17 pm |
  50. Cindy

    It is SO sad to hear that Michael may have died. I'm waiting to hear that from the hospital before I say it is true. He was a great talent and will be missed if it's true! My prayers go out to his family. And I hope the press respects his children's privacy!


    June 25, 2009 at 7:07 pm |
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