Michael Jackson's final resting place is Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale, Calif. -- a memorial park known as much for its celebrities as its very serious security. Find out the 12 fascinating facts about Forest Lawn and Michael's final goodbye.
12 Facts about Michael Jackson's Funeral
Michael will be buried at Forest Lawn Glendale, in what will be a hidden monument in a mausoleum made of marble and mortar.
2. Ten Weeks Later
Michael is being laid to rest ten weeks after his death — longtime Jackson friend Rodney Jerkins told “Extra” the family wasn’t prepared to say goodbye.
Jerkins says Jackson’s death was completely unexpected and family members were not prepared for the amount of grief they experienced. Jerkins says he “can’t imagine” the pain the Jackson family is in. “As close a friend as Michael was to me,” he says, “If it’s family, it’s just a whole other level.”
3. Celeb Friends Say Goodbye
Macaulay Culkin, Aretha Franklin and Gladys Knight will attend the funeral.
4. At Rest with Legends
Jackson will be in the Great Mausoleum, joining Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, W.C. Fields and Red Skelton. Other famous names buried at Forest Lawn include George Burns, Gracie Allen, Walt Disney and Nat King Cole.
5. The Last Supper
In the Mausoleum, there’s a life-size stained glass recreation of Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.”
Nearby are two of the world’s largest paintings, “The Crucifixion” and “Resurrection.”
Forest Lawn was founded in 1906 by a group of businessmen on 55 hillside acres in the town of Tropico (later Glendale).
AP says there was no forest and no lawn — just a traditional graveyard.
7. Eliminating Tombstones
In the early 1900s, manager Hubert Eaton began convincing people to buy plots before they died, and sales began booming.
Eaton soon eliminated tombstones for grass and lawns. He changed the name “cemetery” to “memorial park,” and soon began collecting art and adding trees, florists, gift shops and chapels.
AP reports the park was divided into sections like Slumberland, Babyland, Graceland and Inspiration Slope, and patriotic sections (“Liberty” and “Victory”) were incorporated in the 1950s.
9. Whites Only?
AP says Forest Lawn once had a whites-only policy, but park spokesman William Martin told AP he didn’t know what year that ended.
10. Total Privacy
The Jackson family has said they desire privacy, and they’ll get it in the Mausoleum. It’s said to be “impossible” to get in. Forest Lawn also reportedly prohibits commercial photography.
11. The After-Party
The Jackson family rented out L.A. restaurant Villa Sorriso and Bar Celona for dinner after the burial.
The event is entirely by invitation only, and all access will be closed to the public.
12. The Cost
The cost of police services — which includes air support and other security — is reportedly $150,000. Michael’s estate is paying for the services.
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