Public Memorial Held for Michael Jackson at Staples Center in Los Angeles
Michael Jackson's public memorial started out more spiritual than spectacular Tuesday, opening with a church choir singing as his golden casket was laid in front of the stage and a shaft of light evoking a cross as Lionel Richie gave a gospel-infused performance.
Pastor Lucious W. Smith of the Friendship Baptist Church in Pasadena gave the invocation, followed by Mariah Carey singing the opening performance with a sweet rendition of the Jackson 5 ballad "I'll Be There," a duet with Trey Lorenz.
"We come together and we remember the time," said Smith, riffing off one of Jackson's lyrics. "As long as we remember him, he will always be there to comfort us."
LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Michael Jackson's body will be brought to the memorial service at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday, sources involved in the planning said.
An army of fans poured in to Los Angeles from places far-flung, hoping to collectively mourn their idol in a massive ceremony.
Parking lots in the area raised their prices, some as high as $30. Airports in Southern California saw a spike in bookings. And several movie theaters in the area announced special screenings of the event, which also will be carried live by some television networks and Web sites.