Michael Jackson Dead at 50
Michael Jackson has been rushed to the hospital, a fire department official told the Los Angeles Times. Capt. Steve Ruda said Thursday that Jackson was not breathing when Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics responded to a call at his Los Angeles home about 12:30 p.m. The paramedics performed CPR and took him to UCLA Medical Center, Ruda told the newspaper.
L. Londell McMillan, a lawyer for Jackson, did not have any information. Messages left for other Jackson associates were not immediately returned.
Howie Kurtz tweets that TMZ “has a good track record on such matters.”
UPDATE: LAT is now reporting Jackson dead as well. That’s close enough to official for me. Headline changed accordingly.
Sad news. While I was never a huge fan of Jackson’s music, he is undeniably among the most important figures in pop history. His legacy, of course, has been tainted by numerous charges of child molestation and endangerment. Suffice it to say that he was a musical genius and a very weird dude.
UPDATE: Oddly, as I was updating the post above, CNN sent a “Breaking News” email that “Pop singer Michael Jackson in coma after cardiac arrest.” This was followed seven minutes later with “Pop singer Michael Jackson has died, according to multiple reports.” Quite surreal.
UPDATE: CNN has officially confirmed this with the LA County coroner. Over at Gone Hollywood, Allie observes, “They say it happens in three’s, Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett and now Michael Jackson.” As my wife and others have noted, Fawcett’s passing has been overshadowed in the news cycle by this news.
UPDATE: Richard Gardner reminds me that he posted on the death of Michael Jackson in September 2007. That, alas, was Michael “The Beer Hunter” Jackson of whom I had previously never heard.
UPDATE: Gone Hollywood has a roundup of Michael Jackson Obituaries. Also, a report that Michael Jackson died of a prescription drug overdose. In subsequent posts here, see Michael Jackson News Saturation – Micheal Jackson Tops Iran! and Michael Jackson Dies, Kills Internet.