Standing before the crowd at the Staples Center , a teary-eyed Brooke Shields remembered not the [artist id=”1102″]Michael Jackson[/artist] that the world knew, but the Michael Jackson that she knew — the Michael who, like her, began his career as a child and had to grow up quickly in the spotlight. But the two managed to be kids when they were alone, despite what anyone else thought of their relationship.
“Thinking back to when we met and the many times that we spent together and whenever we were out together,” Shields, who met Jackson when she was 13, said, “there would be a caption of some kind, and the caption usually said something like ’an odd couple’ or ’an unlikely pair,’ but to us it was the most natural and easiest of friendships.”
Throughout the speech, Shields recalled some of her fondest memories of MJ, like the time they attended one of Elizabeth Taylor’s weddings and the countless times they laughed together over the span of their decades-long friendship. “Michael always knew he could count on me to support him or be his date and that we would have fun no matter where we were. We had a bond,” she said.
During her heartfelt and humorous speech, Shields recalled poking fun at Jackson for wearing one glove and the time he attempted, unsuccessfully, to teach her to moonwalk. “I used to tease him and I would say, ’You know, I started when I was 11 months old, you slacker. You were what, 5?’ ” she said. “Both of us needed to be adults very early, but when we were together, we were two little kids having fun.”
Toward the end of her speech, Shields read two passages from the book “The Little Prince,” saying that although he was called the King of Pop, he was always a little prince to her. She read, “Here is my secret. It is very simple: One sees well only with the heart. The essential is invisible to the eyes.”
After sharing that Jackson’s favorite song was “Smile” by Charlie Chaplin, she quoted that song, and then added in her own words, “Michael saw everything with his heart. Today, although our hearts are aching, we need to look up where he is undoubtedly perched in a crescent moon, and we need to smile.”
For complete coverage of the life, career and passing of the legendary entertainer, visit “Michael Jackson Remembered.”
Share your Michael Jackson memories by uploading video and comments to Your.MTV.com or joining the discussion below.