Michael Jackson praised by son
Prince Michael Jackson credits his late father for teaching him "what it is to be a man".
The 19-year-old son of the late pop music icon Michael Jackson – who passed away in 2009 – says he hopes he can be as good a dad as his father someday but right now, he lavishes affection on his cousin’s children.
He told PEOPLE: "He taught me what it is to be a man; he showed me what it is to be a father. For me, [I want] to pass that on to my kids, or to help someone else who has kids. My cousin TJ [Jackson]’s kids, I treat them as if they were my kids. I have fun with them, I love watching them. That being said, I do hype them up, and they do get wild around me, but I think that would probably be the way to continue the teachings."
Prince Michael has been working with the volunteer group Heal LA at Loyala Marymount University, where he is currently studying, and says his charity work is influenced by his father.
He said: "That is something that my dad always did, and he instilled that in me and my siblings to keep doing it. I think it’s just the way that I was raised, honestly."
"I do have a memory: He had taken us to a hospital for children, and I remember that they were very sick. But when he walked into the room it lit up. All of the kids got happy.
"I met the president [of Heal LA], and he said that he was a big fan of my dad; that my dad had inspired him to pursue a career in non-profits and that he wanted to get started with a program, a service organization, on the Loyola Marymount campus. It would be called ‘Heal LA’ inspired by ‘Heal the World.’ Because one of my dad’s main focuses was children and hunger — and homelessness was another big thing — we decided to focus on that. But because we are only based in LA, we decided that we were going to call it ‘Heal LA’ in the hopes that we could start a ripple that could spread."