[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/07/michael.jackson.wrap/art.daughter.aeglive.jpg caption="Paris Katherine Jackson, 11, said goodbye to her father at the close of the memorial service."]
Tom Foreman | Bio
Judging from the Twitterfall, a lot of fans were reduced to weeping puddles by the words of Paris Jackson. As that young girl stood at the microphone and tried to speak of her love for her father, she was a stark reminder of the simple fact that in the end the King of Pop was also a human being. I watched as the family swept her away from the microphone and hugged her, and heard the audience applaud with praise and sympathy for her courage in a terrible time.
But sadly, there is a legacy of that moment I can not ignore: For the first time, I know exactly what she looks like. I have heard her voice. And millions more…maybe hundreds of millions…did too.
Jackson was certainly not a typical father, and he did some things that defied defense: that horrific baby dangling episode, for example. In addition, there are all those troubling questions about his private conduct that will forever circle his biography like vultures.
Tonight on 360°, family, friends and fans say goodbye to Michael Jackson. The songs. The speeches. The laughter. The tears. We have all the highlights from today's nearly three hour memorial service in Los Angeles.
Want to know more about what we're covering tonight? Read EVENING BUZZ
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Anderson travels to Ghana later this week for an exclusive interview with President Obama who will visit Accra, the capital, after the G8 summit in Italy this week.
This is the first trip of an African-American president to Africa. Obama visited Africa as a senator and, in 2006, received a hero's welcome in his father's native Kenya.
The president will address various bilateral and regional issues with Ghanaian President John Atta Mills, the White House said in a news statement.
"The President and Mrs. Obama look forward to strengthening the U.S. relationship with one of our most trusted partners in sub-Saharan Africa, and to highlighting the critical role that sound governance and civil society play in promoting lasting development," according to the statement.
Tune in for Anderson's interview with the President next week on AC360°.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/07/07/img100.jpg caption="The program cover for Michael Jackson's memorial" width=292 height=320]
Editor's Note: This is the program cover for Michael Jackson's memorial, earlier today. For the latest on the King of Pop’s death and for coverage of his memorial , tune in to AC360° tonight 10p ET.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/07/michael.jackson.wrap/art.mj.mem.family.cnn.jpg caption="Jackson's family embrace each other on stage during the close of the emotional service."]
Editor's Note: Below is Michael Jackson's death certificate from the County of Los Angeles Department of Health Services. For the latest on the King of Pop's death, tune in to AC360° tonight 10p ET.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/07/michael.jackson.wrap/art.daughter.aeglive.jpg caption= "Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, 11, said goodbye to her father at the close of the memorial service."]
There were a lot of tears at Michael Jackson's memorial service in Los Angeles. Perhaps the most emotional moment came when Jackson's 11-year-old daughter stepped up to the microphone to talk to the crowd. Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, the second of Jackson's three children, was surrounded by her grandmother, aunts and uncles and two brothers as she spoke near the end of the service.
"Ever since I was born, daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine", Paris said sobbing. "And I just want to say I love him so much."
Tonight on AC360°, we'll bring you some of the key moments of today's memorial service at the Staples Center. What did you think of the tribute to Jackson? Share your thoughts below.
With an estimated crowd of 20,000 people inside the arena and millions watching around the world, the pop singer's casket was carried in by his brothers, who each wore white sequined gloves as a tribute to Jackson.
Then throughout the nearly three hour service, one by one, singers and speakers paid tribute to the "King of Pop". Jackson's three children sat in the front row at the arena along with other family members.
Mariah Carey, Lionel Richie and Jennifer Hudson were among the many who said farewell to Jackson by singing at today's service.
One of the most touching performances was by Michael's brother Jermaine, who sang the song "Smile".
Just before he took the stage actress Brooke Shields, a longtime friend of Michael's, explained why the song holds such special meaning.
[cnn-photo-caption image="http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/01/jackson.wrap/art.mj.gate.afp.gi.jpg" caption="Workers fix the gate at Neverland Ranch's entrance this week in Los Olivos, California."]
Tickets to Michael Jackson's Staples Center memorial in L.A. are gone, and fans without them are wondering where to say a special goodbye. From East Coast to West, these places either are part of the Jackson legend or had a hold on his heart.
The famous wrought-iron gates of Jackson's 2,700-acre ranch near Santa Barbara, Calif., have been replaced by wooden doors, which will be closed for the memorial service. But just outside them — where more than 7,000 visitors have left flowers, balloons and teddy bears — mourners are expected to continue their vigil on July 7, 2009, and beyond.
Jackson was born and raised in this hard-luck town in a one-story home on 23rd and — wait for it — Jackson Street. He rarely looked back once he moved away at age 11. Nonetheless, Jackson is a great source of pride to Gary, and the ongoing celebration at the house reflects that. A memorial service is set for July 10, 2009, at the town's U.S. Steel Works ballpark.
The Apollo Theater
Jackson's appearance with his brothers at the famed Harlem theater in 1976 is credited with launching the Jackson 5's career, and the Apollo has taken the East Coast lead in remembering Jackson's life. Thousands of fans have signed a remembrance wall that has had to be replaced three times to allow more signatures.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/07/07/michael.jackson.international.reaction/art.jackson.impersonator2.cnn.jpg caption="An eerily similar Michael Jackson impersonator performs for devotees in China Tuesday."]
As the funeral for Michael Jackson got under way in California Tuesday, fans of the King of Pop gathered in locations across the globe to pay homage to their idol.
Thousands of fans poured in to Los Angeles en route to the public memorial service at the Staples Center arena, while Jackson's family and closest friends attended a private gathering at the Hollywood Hills Forest Lawn cemetery before going on to the memorial downtown.
In Germany, thousands of Jackson fans have been offered the chance to watch events in Los Angeles live at Berlin's O2 World arena.
Organizers of the event dubbed "Trauerfeier," (translated as Sadness Party) said the screening is free but with a limited number of tickets available.
British fans will be given a similar opportunity in London, with a giant screen scheduled to show the event outside the city's O2 Arena. Jackson was scheduled to play a series of 50 concerts at the arena from July 13 - hundreds of fans are expected to converge on the venue next week to mark the date.