Joe Jackson, Father of legendary Michael and Janet Jackson, Dead at 89
A Jackson family source father of Michael was in a Las Vegas hospital with terminal cancer. According to the source, Joe Jackson has been battling the illness for a while now and doctors recently told members of the family that he has limited time to live because the cancer cannot be treated.
Jackson was previously in the hospital in 2016 after he became weak and struck a high fever during a regularly scheduled checkup with his doctor. The brief illness sparked rumors that he was dying — or had already died. Those rumors were quickly dispelled by Jackson himself.
He also suffered a stroke on July 26, 2015 (the same day as his 87th birthday) while traveling in Brazil.
But Jackson recovered from both illnesses, showing that despite his years, he was still tough. He referenced that toughness recently when he shared some advice for grandson Blanket Jackson in a heartfelt video: “Be like me: Be tough, in a good way, and you’ll live a long time.”
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Joe Jackson was the father of late music legend Michael Jackson, who died on June 25, 2009. He was also the father of four daughters — Janet, La Toya, Rebbie and Joh’Vonnie — and six other sons — Jermaine, Randy, Tito, Jackie, Marlon and Brandon, who died in March 1957 just after he was born. Joe was married to wife Katherine since 1949.
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Joe, a famous talent manager, is best known for managing his sons’ musical group, The Jackson 5, originally known as The Jackson Brothers. The group, which included vocals by Michael, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine and Marlon, was created in the early 1960s in the family’s hometown of Gary, Indiana. Their first single, “Big Boy,” was released on Jan. 30, 1968 on the Steeltown Records label. They were signed to Motown Records approximately one year later.
While the group was with Motown, Joe Jackson helped The Jackson 5 reach nationwide fame with hits like “ABC,” “I Want You Back,” “The Love You Save” and “I’ll Be There.” In 1974, Joe created his own record label, Ivory Tower International Records. The artists he signed toured with The Jackson 5 that year, performing as the groups’ opening acts during their international tour.
Joe also helped launch solo careers for both Randy and Janet. Janet, who at age 52 is still going strong on her State of the World Tour, balancing her career with being a mom to 1-year-old son Eissa.
Joe’s family journey was highlighted in the ABC mini-series, The Jacksons: An American Dream, in 1992, and in VH1’s Man in the Mirror: The Michael Jackson Story in 2004. Joe was portrayed by actors Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs and Frederic Tucker, respectively. In 2011, Joe was inducted into the Arkansas Hall of Fame. He received The Rhythm & Blues Humanitarian Award from the R&B Music Hall of Fame four years later.