Despite his last name, former Jackson 5 drummer Johnny Jackson wasn't one of the famous siblings. But that's not stopping Janet Jackson from treating him like a brother.
The singer, and youngest member of the hit-making family, has reportedly agreed to foot the bill for Johnny Jackson's funeral after he was slain last week.
Although Janet Jackson has not confirmed her generosity, Jackson family attorney Brian Oxman told Indiana's Gary Post Tribune that she offered to pay because she "is just a sweet, sweet girl."
"He was like a brother to all of them," Oxman said of the late drummer, who began backing the quintet in 1967. "He was a part of their youth, and now that is gone."
Johnny Jackson's biological sister, who is handling the musician's funeral arrangements, declined to elaborate on his funeral, saying she wanted to keep it as private as possible.
"My brother wasn't that type of person," she told the Post Tribune. "He did not want to be on the scene like that. I want to keep it private and abide by his wishes."
News of Jackson's death last week "has come as a real shock to the Jackson family," Oxman said.
Jackson replaced the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame group's original drummer in the late '60s, shortly after the famous family moved from Gary to Los Angeles. He was purportedly a nephew of family patriarch Joe Jackson, and adopted by the family as a teen so he could join the band on tour.
"[The Jacksons] always had the warmest feelings for Johnny," Oxman said. Several members of the family are expected for the funeral, including Jermaine, Tito, Marlon, Randy and Jackie.
According to police, the musician was fatally stabbed in his Gary, Indiana, home on Mar. 1, following a domestic dispute with girlfriend Yolanda R. Davis.
A neighbor overheard the couple in a heated exchange and alerted police, who found the 54-year-old drummer unconscious and bleeding with a stab wound to his chest.
Davis, 44, who lived with Jackson, was arrested and charged Monday for his murder and remains held without bond in Lake County Jail.
According to the police report, Davis told cops she stabbed Jackson with a steak knife after he lunged at her and tried to choke her. Davis allegedly told police officers that she wiped the blade off with a towel and exited through the home's back door before cops arrived at the scene.
If convicted of the murder charge, she faces up to 65 years in prison.
Visitation will take place Friday at Smith Bizzell & Warner Funeral Home in Gary.
Scores of local musicians are gathering in Jackson's hometown Wednesday to pay tribute to him. Jackson's drum kit will be draped in a funeral shroud and set up near the performance area.
"We're calling all the musicians that he played with," organizer Cal Spencer told the Post Tribune. "This is us playing goodbye to a fellow musician. Johnny was one of the top drummers in the world."