Source: Journal Standard.com – By Harriett Gustason (Published March 19, 2011)
A person can know someone pretty well and think they know just about everything about them. Then one day, a really astounding story pops out from them confirming the old journalistic proverb, “There’s a story in everyone.” (People often have a wealth of them hoarded inside themselves.)
Journal-Standard co-worker and friend, Yvonne Myers, shared a rare experience she had some years ago. Today it’s almost like a mystic experience for her, she can hardly believe it.
She was with a small group who spent exclusive time with Michael Jackson, yes THE Michael Jackson.
“He was part of Jehovah’s Witnesses,” Yvonne said, explaining that he invited this group of fellow followers to attend one of his concerts.
Yvonne said it was back when Michael was an innocent kid, wired and high-strung, to be sure, and in the height of his career, at the stage when his hits “Thriller” and “Beat It” were hypnotizing the youth of the nation. Yvonne thinks Michael was in his mid-20s at the time.
Michael was on his “Victory Tour,” all happening before the famous entertainer had spun off on all the tangents into which life drove him. The contact through the religious affiliation was the reason Yvonne and the others were privy to this exciting experience. Yvonne lived in Boulder, Colo., at the time.
“Michael was serious about his religion and really wanted to teach people the Bible,” Yvonne said. “His mother, Katherine Jackson, and an older sister, were also Jehovah’s Witnesses. As far as I know they still are.”
“Jehovah’s Witnesses,” Yvonne explained, “take seriously the command by Jesus to teach and make disciples, and they follow the pattern that Jesus set with his disciples to go from house to house. Michael also followed this example, only for him it was a little more challenging. People would recognize him so he would wear a disguise to make him appear on the plumper side and could, hopefully, knock on a few doors before someone recognized him.”
Well, Yvonne and this small group she was with got invited to a party at the hotel where Michael was staying. “We got to meet Jermaine and Tito, Michael’s brothers, and his parents, Joe and Katherine Jackson,” Yvonne said. “I was shy and overwhelmed and didn’t talk much.”
“We all got into a limousine with darkened windows and they took us to the Mile High Stadium in Denver. It was an outdoor concert. As we were leaving the hotel, fans were hitting and pounding on the limo windows. But it was a decoy. Michael had been slipped into another car. We had many escorts.”
It was an outdoor concert and the bunch of six or seven in Yvonne’s group was escorted up on a platform above the crowd. It sticks in her mind that there was a big tree on the set. “Michael was a live wire bouncing all over the stage,” Yvonne said.
“The limo took us back to the hotel and they took pictures. That’s when I got mine taken with Michael. At one point he kissed me on the cheek and they took a picture of that, but I don’t know what happened to that one.” Fortunately, during a recent move, Yvonne ran across the picture shown here and agreed to share it. In the photo, Michael Jackson is holding a purple carnation. It was the purple carnation she had given him.
Yvonne Myers’ eyes light up when she returns to this memory of meeting with a celebrity of that stature. She likes to remember him as he was at that stage in life.