Joe Jackson, father of Michael, dies at 89

Joe Jackson
Joe Jackson

In Summary

  • As the group's manager, Jackson put his sons through long, regimented rehearsals.
  • Michael Jackson told Oprah Winfrey in a 1993 interview that he was so afraid of his father he would sometimes vomit when he saw him.
  • He said Joe presided over rehearsals with a belt.

Joe Jackson, father to Michael, Janet, and the Jackson 5  has died at the age of 89.

The patriarch of an American musical dynasty who put his children on the road to stardom but also verbally and physically abused them, had been suffering from cancer.

Despite periods of estrangement from some of his 10 children, family members had been at his bedside in his last few days, his grand daughter Paris said.

“I will always love you!,” his pop star daughter La Toya Jackson tweeted on Wednesday.

“You gave us strength, you made us one of the most famous families in the world. I am extremely appreciative of that, I will never forget our moments together and how you told me how much you cared. #RIP Joe Jackson.”

Grandson Randy Jackson Jr. tweeted, “RIP to the king that made everything possible!!! I love you grandpa.”

The Jackson family was often riven by legal battles, jealousies, money disputes, Joe’s philandering and unproven allegations of child molestation against Michael.

Joe was left out of Michael’s will when he died aged 50 in 2009.

John Branca and John McClain, the executors of Michael Jackson’s estate, said in a statement on Wednesday that Joe was “a strong man who acknowledged his own imperfections and heroically delivered his sons and daughters from the steel mills of Gary, Indiana to worldwide pop superstardom.”

Joe Jackson, who was born July 26, 1928, in Fountain Hill, Arkansas, had tried careers as a boxer and a guitarist with little success in the 1950s.

He was working as a crane operator at a steel plant in Gary, Indiana, when he took note of the musical and dance talents of his sons.

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