, LOS ANGELES, Jul 8 – The location of Michael Jackson’s final resting place remained shrouded in mystery Tuesday hours after a glittering public memorial to the King of Pop.
Jackson’s family had earlier surprised mourners after deciding to put the singer’s gold-plated coffin on view at the Staples Centre memorial after a private ceremony at the Forest Lawn mortuary.
However as Jackson’s family headed to a five-star Beverly Hills hotel to gather for a post-memorial lunch, the destination of the singer’s lavish casket and when, or if, it would be interred was unclear.
A spokeswoman for the family declined to comment as local media reports said the coffin was being taken to an unknown location and would not return to the cemetery in the Hollywood Hills where it had started the day.
The uncertainty over Jackson’s burial plans is likely to fuel speculation that the singer may yet be laid to rest at his beloved Neverland Ranch in the secluded California wine country northwest of Los Angeles.
Although the Jackson family last week quashed plans to hold a public viewing of Jackson’s body at the estate, family members remain keen on the idea of Neverland becoming the star’s permanent home.
In an interview with NBC television, Jermaine Jackson said Neverland would be a fitting final resting place for the pop star.
"This is his home, he created this. Why wouldn’t he be here?" Jackson said.
"I feel his presence. And I love that, and I want my mother to come back here and feel what I feel. He built this place with love and you can see it and feel it."