Dec 01 2011

December 1st is World AIDS Day

Category: Children,Friends,Humanitarian,Photos,Poetry,VideosSeven @ 1:16 am

In honor of World AIDS Day, I’d like to bring attention not only to this horrible disease and all those suffering with it or who may suffer with it, but also to Michael Jackson who this site is dedicated to, and who bravely and selflessly befriended young Ryan White who contracted HIV/AIDs in the 1980s from a blood transfusion. Kicked out of school and shunned by many in his Indiana town because of fear of the disease, Michael became Ryan’s friend and companion during the last years of Ryan’s life. Michael attended Ryan’s funeral with his family, and performed the song “Gone Too Soon” in honor of Ryan, who died in April 1990. One video of that song is below, sung at Bill Clinton’s inauguration, after which Michael asked President Clinton to provide research and treatment funding to fight the disease. The Ryan White Care Act was passed in August 1990.

On October 21st 2009, the House passed the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act (S.1793), reauthorizing the Ryan White program for four years. On Oct 29, 2009, Ryan White’s mother Jeanne White-Ginder was present at the signing ceremony of this fourth extension of the original Care Act.

The Ryan White program has served people with AIDS and HIV for nearly two decades. The Ryan White program provides care, treatment and support services to nearly half a million people.

I had little Ryan White in my dining room telling his mother at the table, ‘Mother, when you bury me, I don’t want to be in a suit and tie.’ He said, ‘Don’t put me in a suit and tie. I want to be in jeans and a t-shirt.’ I said, ‘Excuse me, I have to go to the bathroom.’ And I ran to the bathroom and I cried. Imagine a 12-year-old boy telling his mother how to bury him. That’s what I heard him say. How could your heart not go out to someone like that?

-Michael Jackson

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Also featured below is a link where Ryan’s mother talks about Michael’s relationship with Ryan and the White family. This interview was televised in July 2009, after Michael’s death (embedding is disallowed for this video, thus, I only provide a link):

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And not least, directly below is a link to MANY AIDS charities that you can contact if you would like to help or donate:

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MJ and Ryan White

Michael and Ryan: Two Angels - Both "Gone Too Soon"

• • •

Ryan White

Ryan White, symbol of justice
Or child of innocence, messenger of love
Where are you now, where have you gone?

Ryan White, I miss your sunny days
We carelessly frolicked in extended plays
I miss you, Ryan White
I miss your smile, innocent and bright
I miss your glory, I miss your light

Ryan White, symbol of contradiction
Child of Irony, or child of fiction?
I think of your shattered life
Of your struggle, of your strife

While ladies dance in the moonlit night
Champage parties on charted cruises
I see your wasted form, your ghostly sight
I feel your festering wounds, your battered bruises

Ryan White, symbol of agony and pain
Of ignorant fear gone insane
In a hysterical society
With free-floating anxiety
And feigned piety

I miss you, Ryan White
You showed us how to stand and fight
In the rain you were the cloudburst joy
The sparkle of hope in every girl and boy
In the depths of your anguished sorrow
Was the dream of another tomorrow

–Michael Jackson

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NOTE: While Michael performed the song in honor of Ryan White, ‘Gone Too Soon‘ was written by Buz Kohan (lyrics) – head writer of the 1983 Motown TV special & many other specials – and Larry Grossman (music) – Thank you Angela!

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17 Responses to “December 1st is World AIDS Day”

  1. MJJ-777 » It’s time for the World to know WHO Michael Jackson WAS rather than WHAT he was DEFINED as by an abusive profit-driven media says:

    […] Charity Contributions 1979 – 2003 Michael’s Kindness Recounted Again and Again Michael Jackson, AIDS, and Ryan White ‘He Was the Most Inspirational Person In My Life’ Truth or Silence? Dangerous Tour Was […]

  2. Patula says:

    This is why I love Michael Jackson because he had a heart of gold. I believe if God kept him here, then he was about to do greater works in the body of Christ and reach the zenith of his life. I know that Michael was getting himself together, but he needed more understanding. I know that he wanted to make an amends with alot of people. God was about to do great things with MJ. I believe this if he did not have so much stress on him.

  3. MJJ-777 » The Warrior is a Child says:

    […] to him. But Michael Jackson, the man who did this for him, is dead.  Who else do you know who would befriend a child dying of AIDS that everyone else in society ignorantly treated as an outcast at the time and provided moral […]

  4. Rosario says:

    Thanks a million times Seven for this post. I so loved the video! I’ve never seen it before–I’m embarrassed to say. Our beautiful, sweet, sensitive, and caring Michael! I wonder if Bill, Hillary and Chelsea remember this precious episode in their lives.

  5. Lauren says:

    I will never see children or adults holding hands like that
    again without seeing the ‘M’ connecting them.

    New definition of grace in the dictionary–Michael Jackson

  6. Angela says:

    You’re welcome, Seven! Thank you so much for your commitment to researching this blog, which surely must be one of the most important ones on the Internet. In contrast to many others, it’s the farthest thing from frivolous that I can imagine. I do believe there will be justice for Michael one day, but I think it will be gradual in coming and will take perseverance from people like you who are showing us the way.

    I’m sure Michael would be “humbled” (his word) by the love and respect you have for him, which comes through so eloquently in your work. Thank you for sharing this with all of your readers. You are a treasure!

  7. TLS says:

    I’m moved not just by the courage it took back then to befriend a person with AIDS (I haven’t forgotten the near-hysteria surrounding the disease), but also the courage to befriend a child you know is going to die. Jackson set aside the pain Ryan’s loss would cause in order to offer friendship; a profound act of love.

  8. Seven says:


    I agree. I remember that too. The hysteria was incredible. Then, for Michael to embrace this boy as he did emotionally and to be there for him when everyone else made him a pariah in his own community was SO brave. No one else would have done that. No one else did. Only Michael.

  9. Susan T says:

    That precious child…to have endured such frenzied shunning is difficult to imagine. Michael demonstrated Christ-like actions when he embraced and surrounded Ryan with his love and concern. For anyone who doubted this man’s sincerity and compassion, they need to read about Ryan White.

    I cannot listen to Gone too Soon without crying. No one will ever bring the emotion and beauty to this song that he did. He sang it grieving, with a heavy heart. We listen to it now grieving, with a tear-flooded soul.

    How beautiful to imagine the two of them in Heaven, enjoying a new chapter in their lives!

    I lost a former boss to AIDs. He was a brilliant, kind, funny man. I’ll never forget him.

    Seven, thanks for this beautiful entry and especially for Michael’s dedication poem to Ryan.

  10. melinda says:

    michael showed friendship and love and compassion for this boy when nobody else would . He’s a real angel:) if only there were people just like him to make the world a better place . rest in peace michael jackson and ryan white you were both gone too soon

  11. corlista says:

    Beautiful, beautiful, Michael. I still weep for you….

  12. sanemjfan says:

    Seven, here is a post we did last year on Ryan White’s relationship with MJ:

  13. Mjilima says:

    This is why i LOVE Michael!!!!!

    Thank u Seven

    Am always looking forward new articles on this blog

    True love never dies
    love MJ

  14. Dialdancer says:

    Thank You Seven,

    The way you present the heart of Michael is a joy to behold. Keep on Michaeling.

  15. Michelle says:

    So heartwarming to read. Michael had such a heart of gold!

  16. Angela says:

    You’re welcome, Seven. It’s my pleasure to learn everything I can about Michael, and I have you to thank for so much enlightenment. I saw Cirque du Soleil do a lovely job of performing this song last month in Vancouver. Here’s a link (not recorded by me): The Immortal World Tour show is excellent and absolutely worth seeing if you can.

    It’s so poignant that the title of the song now describes its singer. Michael’s talent and creativity were spectacular, weren’t they? Not to mention his all-embracing love. What a loss.

  17. Sina says:

    Gone too soon is still too heartbreaking to listen to.

    Nowadays you cant imagine the stigma there was on aids in the 80s en 90s.
    I saw a documentary about Freddy Mercury of Queen and despite his megastardom, he too kept it a secret up to a week before he passed.
    Its thanks to Michael and others like Elizabeth Taylor, that the stigma is gone and people dont have to suffer in silence anymore.
    Seven thanks for reminding us of this day and how Michael made a difference in many peoples lifes. Inspires me to do the same.

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