Janet Jackson takes stage for BET finale

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Janet Jackson has taken the stage at the BET Awards to speak on behalf of her grieving family and thank fans for their love and support.

It was Janet Jackson's first public appearance since her brother died last Thursday. With a deep sadness on her face, she strolled to the microphone and began to speak.

She said: "My entire family wanted to be here tonight, but it was just too painful, so they elected me to be here."

She noted that the King of Pop was an icon to all in attendance, but that to the Jacksons, "he was family."

After her brief comments, Ne-Yo and host Jamie Foxx took the stage and sang a poignant "I'll Be There" by the Jackson 5.

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