Several hundred fans gathered outside his burial place in the Forest Lawn cemetery in Glendale, north of Los Angeles, and held a minute’s silence at 2:26 p.m., the moment when Jackson, 50, was pronounced dead on June 25, 2009. They then broke into a rendition of “Heal the World” as some mourners quietly sobbed, hugged or wiped away tears.
Fans, some dressed like Jackson, placed posters, dolls, sequined gloves and even a red jacket like the singer’s signature “Thriller” outfit outside the private mausoleum where he is buried.
“Forever King,” “We’ll never forget you” and “We’ll never let you part” read some of the messages from Iran, Hungary and Japan.
Joan Simons travelled to the cemetery from the Netherlands, meeting up with people she had met on fan Facebook groups over the years. “We all feel the same – the love for Michael as a person, his music,” Simons told Reuters.
Jackson died at his Los Angeles home after an overdose of the powerful anaesthetic propofol, which he was using as a sleep aid. His doctor, Conrad Murray, was convicted at a 2011 trial of involuntary manslaughter.
“A decade later, Michael Jackson is still with us, his influence embedded in dance, fashion, art and music of the moment. He is more important than ever,” the Jackson estate said in a statement marking the anniversary.