July 7, 2009
Posted: 07:10 PM ET
Larry was sitting in the third row of today's service, directly behind the family. Here are his impressions from the memorial.
I was deeply honored to be asked to be a family guest. Barbara Walters and I were the only two media figures invited by the family, so I was really touched by that. My overall reflections on the memorial - it was an outstanding show, and a great tribute. It was very well organized, maybe about 20 minutes too long, but that's being picky. When his daughter Paris spoke, boy, that was something.
As far as the speeches went, Al Sharpton was out of this world. One of the best speeches I've heard anywhere, anytime, anyplace. The musical performances were terrific. Usher was very moving, Jermaine did great, Lionel Richie was outstanding. Shaheen Jafargholi, the young man who sang "Who's Loving You," was also terrific. I turned to Berry Gordy, who was sitting next to me, and we both just shrugged and said "who the heck is this kid." And Jermaine - I hadn't heard him sing in years. That was really moving.
The LA Police did a really good of security and getting everybody there and keeping things orderly. Ken Sunshine and everyone from AEG also did a nice job. The crowd was respectful. The yells of "love you Michael" seemed very approrpriate. The family seemed genuinely touched by the outpouring of love and support. The whole thing - what can you say? It was a magnificent tribute. I know Michael would have loved it.
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