The Love Continues for Michael Jackson 8 Years Later
My three MJ dolls
Entrance to Forest Lawn – 24 June 2017
Why do I return to Forest Lawn year after year on the anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death? In a word, love.
Every year around June 25th, cards, letters, roses, flowers, gifts, balloons and sunflowers begin arriving at Forest Lawn Glendale and Neverland. I spend days meeting and talking to fans and creating photos of the love he continues to inspire. I show up because love is in my blood. It’s healing to be surrounded by these genuine expressions of love for Michael Jackson.
I have always loved Hitomi Osani’s art work from Japan. She puts so much love into each piece of art she creates.
Hand made, detailed card from Vania in Italy.
Inside caption detail.
Card from Romania
The creativity that Michael Jackson fans pour into their cards is unlike anything I’ve ever seen.
I love the simplicity of this card.
Card from Mary K all the way from Greece.
Envelope of card from 16 Japanese fans.
I found this card to be so beautiful. 16 fans from Japan, who met each other because of their shared love of Michael Jackson. Heal the World he sang…..
“It has passed for eight years. However, you are still brilliant. I love you, Michael, forever. From Japan, Noriko.
Japanese fans work on their Michael Jackson tribute quilts throughout the entire year. The details of the quilt and what the fans write on their tiny sections of the quilt are creative and loving. I have always had a feeling that Michael can see all of the genuine heart-felt offerings that are left in his honor.
Quilt from Japan.
Insert from Japanese quilt from Risa.
Quilt insert from Japan.
Quilt insert from Mayuko
Quilt insert from 9 Japanese fans.
MJ’s eyes and eyebrows are finely embroidered by Akko.
Ikuko Ozawa from Japan.
Wonderful drawing of MJ by Rita.
“I am proud to be your fan.”
Another stunning artwork.
Yai Kojima from Japan.
backside of card – Yae Kojima – Japan
Haruyo from Japan.
Tiziana Schelling from Italy.
Marisa’s lovely card.
Chris from U.K.
I am particularly moved and proud to be a part of the ‘One Rose for Michael Jackson,’ organization spearheaded by Robyn Starkland. This year, 8,527 long stem roses are delivered for Michael. We unload the boxes in the hot sun and set them up. Tomorrow, on June 26, I will join Robyn’s team and show even more love by delivering the roses to various charities across Los Angeles.
8,527 red, long stem roses line the way to Michael’s resting place.
Robyn Starkland – Organizer of One Rose for Michael Jackson.
The team that set up the roses from One Rose for Michael Jackson.
The entire team!
After arranging the flowers, a woman carrying a handmade Michael Jackson doll catches my eye. I meet Miyuki Amano from Tokyo, Japan. The doll was intricate and well made. I have a fondness of MJ dolls, so I asked her how long it took her to make it. “It took me three weeks,” she answered. “One day I worked on it for six hours.” She told me she has loved Michael since the day she discovered The Jacksons in 1978. I thanked her, and without a moment’s hesitation she said, “I love you.”
That is a shining example of the power of Michael Jackson. He brings people from different cultures and continents together, who don’t even know each other, yet they have no problem expressing what can sometimes be hard for close friends to say to each other: “I love you.” The magnitude of such authentic kindness made me teary.
Miyuki Amano – Tokyo, Japan
Left to Right:
I saw my friend Fanny Fung from Hong Kong. We were happy to see each other. She said she saw my recent photos on Instagram. “I would like to give you a thumbs up,” she said. More tears.
Hong Kong group
Left to right:
Miranda Yuen, Queenie Jackson, Fanny Fung,
Holy Leung, May Cheng
Gorgeous art work from Hong Kong.
Card from Cathay Cat Cat from Hong Kong
I liked the gentle nature of Jose Manuel and Sylvia Siles Rodriguez from Aran Valley, Spain. They are getting married at Forest Lawn on June 25, 2017.
Jose Manuel and Sylvia Siles Rodriquez from Aran Valley, Spain.
I was taken by Raquel Jean-Joseph’s aura immediately. I asked her about her practice and she told me her mother told her to meditate and then it came to her in a dream, because she had severe anxiety, that she needed to meditate.
Raquel Jean-Joseph was radiant in person.
And, here is Timmy Dolan, who is eleven years old. He said “I’ve been practicing Michael’s dances since I was eight. I discovered Michael by watching him on TV. I love his dance moves, he created a lot of dance moves.” When I asked him what he loved most about Michael he said “because he was kind.”
Eleven year old Timmy Dolan.
Singer Leonard Cohen wrote that there is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in. Michael’s light guided him throughout his life, through the good times and through the bad. He always gave credit to a higher power for his songs and ideas.
Michael was the soundtrack of my life. Driving in my 1979 white Volvo while listening to Off the Wall, and singing as loud as possible. Michael said he was here for a reason and that he loved being on stage because it made people happy. He felt it was his job. “As long as the people enjoy it, I’ll always be happy.”
Flowers from fans in China.
From fans in Japan.
From Vicky in Japan.
From Naoko in Japan.
Sachiko, Takeshi Nakamura designed this arrangment for the 35th anniversary of Thriller.
He was a public figure from the time he could walk, talk and sing. He knew he was born to entertain and he never doubted his purpose. His commitment to his art was first and lifelong. Michael’s dedication to his craft and his discipline continue to inspire me. His message of heal the world, we are the world, and his messages of peace, love for nature, and love for each other have never been more important.
“I will sing to achieve any purpose. I sing the only flower in the world! You look at me from heaven.
Dear Michael, I miss you so. I want to see you again.
Harumi Onuzuka from Japan.
Quilt from fans in Ireland.
The creativity is endless.
Purple and white roses from France.
Aunque los años pasen la herida sigue. Abierta siempre estarás en mi corazón.
Te quiero, Michael.
As the years go by, the wound continues. My heart is always open.
I love you, Michael.
Whenever anyone said, “I love you” whether it was family, friend or fan, Michael was famous for saying “I love you more.”
Rest in peace.
Teddy Riley, producer of Michael’s Dangerous album and co writer of Blood on the Dance Floor and Ghosts said “I’ve never witnessed anything or anyone as powerful as Michael”.
Michael was a powerful, young boy from Gary, Indiana who loved the innocence of children and animals. He would cry not only when he saw starving children, but also if he missed seeing James Brown on television. He dreamt of being the greatest entertainer in the world, and he was. Michael lived for his music and died for it too. Now, the world has unrequited love for Michael.
From Michael Jackson fans all around the globe, to the mighty boy from Gary, Indiana:
“WE LOVE YOU MORE, MICHAEL.”
I really got a thing for these MJ dolls!!!
Self Portrait with Michael Jackson
The Love Continues for Michael Jackson 8 Years Later