Michael Jackson left more than an extensive musical legacy and his former estate of Neverland Ranch behind when he died at the age of the 50 on June 25, 2009 — the “Billie Jean” singer also had three children.
Michael’s first child, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., was born to the musician and nurse Debbie Rowe, to whom he was married from 1996 to 1999, on February 13, 1997. He was nicknamed “Prince” and reportedly cared for by nurses and nannies at the Neverland Ranch.
The Grammy winner welcomed a second child, daughter Paris, with Rowe, now 60, on April 3, 1998. She made a tearful speech at her father’s memorial service and struggled in the wake of Michael’s death, attempting to take her own life by slashing her wrists and taking 20 Motrin pills in 2013 and claiming to have been sexually assaulted by a stranger at the age of 14, according to her cover interview with Rolling Stone in January 2017. She spent time in treatment and later came to prominence as a model and aspiring singer.
His third child, Prince Michael Jackson II, arrived on February 21, 2002, to an unknown surrogate. He quickly garnered the nickname “Blanket” and was introduced to the world months after his birth — when his father made headlines for holding him over the railing of a hotel balcony in Berlin.
The 19-time Grammy winner later called the action a “mistake,” saying, “I offer no excuses for what happened. I got caught up in the excitement of the moment. I would never intentionally endanger the lives of my children.”
“As we were growing up my dad always said, ‘I really don’t care what you do in life, as long as you’re happy doing it and you’re the best at what you do. If you want to be a janitor at a high school, you should be the best janitor that you can be,’” eldest son Prince said during a March 2017 appearance on Good Morning America. “So, I think that he would always be the supporting figure to me and my siblings and support us in all the endeavors that we try.”
He continued: “My father was the King of Pop and [my company] King’s Son Productions has this mantra where a title is earned, but a name is given. So, I was born as Prince and that was the name my dad had given to me, but my dad had earned the epithet King of Pop and that’s through hard work and years of training and everything that he worked so hard to get. So it’s a form of motivation because my name is Prince, but for all [intents and] purposes I am the King’s son — working to get my own epithet.”
Scroll through to find out where each of the pop star’s children are today: