Michael Jackson to be Buried in Famed Hollywood Cemetery

"I think that the city is trying to do what it should do to secure people. That's what cities do. Clearly no one in the family is happy that the city is incurring any expense at all," he said. "You're talking about a historic figure who will have a historic celebration, probably one that we will not see similar in this generation."

More than 17,000 people learned Sunday whether they'd be among the lucky few who would be bestowed with a cherished ticket and wristband that would let them into either the Staples Center or the nearby Nokia Theatre Tuesday.

"It's overwhelming to think we're going to be there and celebrate his life," one lucky ticketholder said Sunday.

Los Angeles police and city leaders have pleaded with Jackson fans to stay away from the Staples Center unless they are properly ticketed or credentialed. But reports indicate that watching the memorial service on television or the Internet won't be enough for the legions of fans who want to be a part of saying goodbye to a pop legend who was arguably the most famous entertainer in history.

Saying Goodbye to a Legend

Tributes to Jackson have already equaled or trumped those seen after the stunning deaths of Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly and John Lennon. Outpourings of grief and awe haven't been seen on such a scale since the 1997 death of Princess Diana.

Some deaths seem to be on a whole other level from entertainers, such as the 1960s killings of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and president John F. Kennedy.

"We have to distinguish between even the most famous entertainers and leaders like a Kennedy or a Martin Luther King who is murdered and really throws the whole Earth off its axis," New York Times columnist Frank Rich said.

But death of iconic musicians sometimes has unquestionable power to throw followers into a tailspin.

"When someone who is a musician dies, you almost feel as if a part of your life is dying, that this is a period that you remember very vividly, and you can totally re-remember every time that music is played," pop culture writer Chuck Klosterman said.

Though Michael Jackson's personal life may have been troubled in his last years, marked by accusations and subsequent reclusiveness, his music, many have said, was pure genius.

"We all love Michael, and it wasn't because of all these things that some of the media projected," Sharpton said. "It was because he was on a journey that we all took with him."

Jackson fans received word about memorial tickets Sunday after waiting eagerly to find out whether their names will be selected at random from an online lottery to attend Michael Jackson's memorial service.

When the registration closed Saturday, 1.6 million had pinned their hopes on the lottery for a seat at the memorial service, but only 17,500 ticket wristbands were given out.

Before choosing the 8,750 registrants at random, AEG, which owns the Staples Center where the service will take place Tuesday at 10 a.m. "scrubbed" duplicate lottery entries, as well as those entries that appear to have been made by auto-entry systems.

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