Mystery Solved: Michael Jackson's Body at Prominent Cemetery

Michael Jackson's body is at Forest Lawn cemetery, sources close to the family told ABC News, but a dispute among his brothers and mother over whether the King of Pop should be finally laid to rest at Neverland Ranch is delaying his burial.

Confirmation of the body's location ends two days of rumor and speculation about where Jackson's body is being held -- a secret the family, the cemetery and local officials have tried to keep quiet.

Jackson's remains may not stay at Forest Lawn, however. The singer's brothers and mother, sources said, are engaged in a argument about whether he should be buried at Neverland Ranch, the Xanadu-like estate at which the King of Pop once held court but where he vowed never to return again after police raided the home looking for evidence of child molestation in December 2003.

Sources close to the family told ABC News that some of Jackson's brothers are beginning the lengthy process of applying for permission from the state to bury the icon at Neverland Ranch, the sprawling estate in Santa Barbra County where he lived from 1988 to 2003.

Jackson's death certificate, which lists his cause of death as "deferred" pending toxicology results, indicates his burial location as "Temp," meaning a final resting place has yet to be determined.

State officials said the process to establish a cemetery in a residential area could take weeks. Adding to the delay, sources said, was a push by Jackson's mother, Katherine,, 79, that the family find an alternative place for burial out of respect for the singer's wish that he never return to Neverland.

Jackson made no arrangements for his burial in his will, written in 2002 and made public last week. His mother was the only family member, aside from his children, mentioned in the will, and her opinion carries considerable weight in any decision the family ultimately makes, sources said.

Three of Jackson's brothers -- Jackie, Jermaine and Tito -- visited Neverland just two days after Jackson died, reminiscing about their brother and fueling speculation that a memorial or burial might be held there.

Jackson was memorialized Tuesday at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. An estimated 19,500 people attended while 1 billion watched on television.

At the memorial Jackson was kept in a closed casket plated with 14 karat gold.

Sources told ABC News that following the public memorial, the family's plan was for Jackson's body to go to Forest Lawn Cemetery in the Hollywood Hills, the final resting place for some of Tinseltown's biggest names, to await burial arrangements.

Impresario Berry Gordy, a close Jackson family friend who eulogized the singer at the memorial, recently purchased a crypt at Forest Lawn leading some to speculate that Jackson's body is being held there temporarily, said Steve Goldstein, author of "LA's Gravesite Companion: Where The VIPs RIP."

A cemetery spokesman said a confidentiality policy prevented him from confirming that the body was there.

Cause of Michael Jackson's Death Still Pending

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles coroner, who has yet to determine the official cause of Jackson's June 25 death, pending the results of a toxicology exam, remains in possession of a piece of Jackson's brain for further testing.

In 2003, Jackson was accused, tried and acquitted of sexual misconduct with a boy. In the aftermath of the trial, Jackson said the invasion of his home by investigators had tainted it and he swore he would never again live there.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...