One family's tribute to the King of Pop

By Jena Johnson - bio | email

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Drumming her fingers to the beat, Colette Johnson recalls memories of Michael Jackson.

"It's the celebration of the life of a man who has inspired a lot of people all over the world," said Johnson.

As Johnson's eyes are glued to the TV, she tries to teach her daughter and granddaughter a thing or two about the King of Pop.

"They don't listen though!" said Johnson as she laughed.

A few miles away at Bullfrogs Sports Bar, some have a different take on Jackson's widely publicized memorial. "Even though he's gone they're still making money off a funeral? I'm sorry, I think that's personal and private," said Ricky Miller, Bullfrogs Sports Bar.

Johnson said many of M. J.'s fans like herself couldn't make it to LA; turning on the TV was her ticket there.

"No one judged it when they did the same thing for Elvis, so I mean a lot of people love Michael the same way they loved Elvis so I don't really see the big deal," said Johnson.

As she sits, watching with her family she hopes they carry this message with them wherever they go. "Regardless of age, color of skin, whatever, anything, anything is possible," said Johnson. "If you set your mind to it you can whatever you want to do and Michael set that example for everybody."

Some said they don't agree with the publicity surrounding Jackson's death. "Let him be put to rest, you know, it's over," said Miller. "Let him be remembered as a great artist."

As the Johnson's clap for their beloved pop icon, they know it won't be the last time Jackson gets a round of applause. "He inspired a lot of people and a lot of people will miss him, but his legacy will go on with or without him being here," said Johnson.

Johnson said she still has eight-track tapes of Michael Jackson that she plans to pass along to her grandchildren one day.

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