Befriending Michael Jackson -- Longtime Pal Says King of Pop Yearned for Normalcy

Longtime Michael Jackson friend Frank Cascio says singer yearned for normality.

ByABC News via GMA logo
July 7, 2009, 8:07 AM

July 7, 2009— -- For one of the most famous men in the world, simple housecleaning was an escape from the hectic and isolated life that came with being Michael Jackson.

Longtime Jackson friend Frank Cascio, 28, told "Good Morning America" today that the King of Pop would just show up at his family's New Jersey home in hopes of capturing a sense of normalcy.

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"And he would come with no security and nannies," Cascio said. "That's when he was himself."

Cascio said Jackson paid his family such a visit earlier this year and got a lot of joy from the pleasures of a simpler life.

"He would even help my mom vacuum the rug," he said. "He would, like, help clean up the house. And he was just a real human being."

Cascio said the two would even sneak off to hit the local stores or have dinner unnoticed.

"Sometimes we would sneak out ... with no security," he said. "And I would get him all dressed up in disguises."

"You know," Cascio continued, "everyone can walk down the street and go shopping. And, you know, we take that for granted, but he could never do that."

Cascio also praised Jackson as "the perfect father."

"He was the greatest father in the world to those kids," he said.

Cascio also remarked on Jackson's close relationship with his mother, Katherine Jackson, who now has custody of Prince Michael I, 12; Paris-Michael Katherine, 11; and Prince Michael II, 7, known as Blanket.

Cascio said he believes his good friend would be "very humbled" by the outpouring of grief and love from his fans.

Cascio met Jackson when he was 5 years old, and the two maintained a steadfast friendship that outlasted the highs and the lows. He worked as Jackson's personal assistant and traveled with the icon all over the world.