Janet Jackson made her first public appearance since the passing of her brother, Michael, at the 9th Annual BET Awards on Sunday.
A grief-stricken Janet was brought on stage by host Jamie Foxx. She appeared in all white and spoke briefly.
“My entire family wanted to be here tonight, but it was just too painful, so they elected me to speak with all of you and I’m going to keep it very short. To you, Michael is an icon. To us, Michael is family and he will forever live in all of our hearts. On behalf of my family and myself, thank you for all of your love. Thank you for all of your support. We miss him so much. Thank you so much.”
Foxx and Ne-Yo closed the show with a rendition of the Jackson 5’s “I’ll Be There,” New Edition opened with a medley of Jackson 5 songs, Ne-Yo sang “Lady in My Life,” and Ciara performed “Heal the World.”
The King of Pop’s father, Joe Jackson, also made an appearance at the show, which was held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles.