(NBC) - Longtime friends are remember Michael Jackson in the wake of the pop superstar's passing.
The Reverend Al Sharpton, friend and sometimes business associate, eulogized Jackson outside of Harlem's legendary Apollo Theatre shortly after learning of his death.
"Michael Jackson made culture accept a person of color, way before Tiger Woods, way before Oprah Winfrey, way before Barack Obama. Michael did with music what they later did in sports and in politics, and in television. And no controversy will erase the historic impact," Sharpton said.
He also touched on Jackson's long decline.