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Northeast D.C. mom and daughter remain huge Michael Jackson fans

Jewel Lewis-Hall and daughter Maxcine Lewis add regularly to their public display of affection on Eighth Street between Florida Avenue and H Street.

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Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, June 24, 2010

It was never intended to be a shrine. Jewel Lewis-Hall just couldn't help herself.

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On the day Michael Jackson died last year, the 55-year-old grandmother placed a photo of the King of Pop on the cluttered front porch of her Northeast Washington rowhouse. She added another. And another and another. Soon 10 pairs of Michael Jackson's eyes stared at passersby on this busy block of Eighth Street between Florida Avenue and rapidly gentrifying H Street. Then 25 pairs.

As the months went by, Lewis-Hall and her daughter, Maxcine Lewis, 27, kept adding to their public display of affection. Posters. Album covers. A beaded glove. Stuffed animals. Giant red plastic hearts. A rose.

A huge shade drops down from the porch ceiling to reveal the message:

Michael Jackson

King of Entertainment

We'll Never Say Good bye!

Love Always

Jewel

On some days a television placed on the porch plays Jackson videos and concert footage. It's hard to walk up the steps and into the house without knocking a Jackson likeness off its pedestal.

Intended or not, a shrine had been built.

As the Michael memorabilia multiplied, more and more passersby stopped to stare back. Bus riders would get off in front of the home for a closer look. Someone painted a portrait of Michael and left it on the stoop. A couple of pictures were swiped. That hurt.


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