Marvin Gaye was one of the finest soul singers of all time, but he died tragically young, at the age of 44, in 1984.
In honor of what would have been his 83rd birthday, we reflect on the wonderful man and what happened between Marvin Gaye and his father.
Marvin Gaye was a singer, songwriter, and producer from the United States.
He was a key figure in the creation of the Motown sound in the 1960s, first as a session singer and then as a solo artist. ‘How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)’ and ‘I Heard It Through the Grapevine’ were among his Motown singles, as were duets with Mary Wells, Kim Weston, Diana Ross, and Tammi Terrell.
He recorded the albums What’s Going On and Let’s Get It On in the 1970s, becoming one of the first Motown musicians (together with Stevie Wonder) to break out on his own.
He made a remarkable comeback with the 1982 Grammy Award-winning hit ‘Sexual Healing’ and its album Midnight Love, following a stint in Europe as a tax exile in the early 1980s.
What happened to Marvin Gaye?
On April 1, 1984, at their house in the West Adams section of Los Angeles, California, Marvin Gaye was fatally shot by his father, Marvin Gay Sr.
Following a confrontation with his father when he intervened in a fight between his parents, the singer was shot twice.
When he arrived at the California Hospital Medical Center, he was pronounced dead.
Over the years, his passing has prompted numerous musical tributes. He was laid to rest in Forest Lawn Cemetery before being cremated and his ashes scattered into the Pacific Ocean.
Who was Marvin Gay, Sr?
Marvin Gaye’s father was a Pentecostal minister in the United States.
Alberta Cooper his wife, and he married in 1935. Alberta already had a kid named Michael, but Gay took him to live with his sister-in-law after claiming he couldn’t parent another man’s child.
They have four children: a daughter, Jeanne, a boy, Frankie, and a daughter, Zeola. Gay also had a son, Antwaun Carey, with a lady he met through one of his extramarital romances.
Gay’s four children described him as a demanding father. Gay allegedly forced his children to keep an extended Sabbath every Saturday, according to his children. He was opposed to the Christian practice of going to church on Sundays.
Gay would also quiz his children on Biblical verses, and if they replied incorrectly, he would spank them.
Marvin is said to have received the harshest of his punishments. Marvin’s upbringing was filled of “violent whippings” from the age of seven until he was in his adolescent years, according to Jeanne.
“Living with Father was like living with a king, an all-harsh, fickle, ruthless, and all-powerful king,” Marvin later stated.
Marvin Gaye’s father shot him for what reason?
Marvin Gaye’s parents fought in the days leading up to his death about a misplaced insurance policy letter.
Disputes had spread to Gaye’s bedroom the day before he died. Gaye was enraged by his father’s yelling at his mother and told him to leave her alone.
On April 1, 1984, at 12.30 p.m., Marvin Sr yelled at his wife about the document. Marvin returned downstairs in his bathrobe, reminding his father that if he had something to say, he should say it in person.
When Marvin Sr refused, Gaye allegedly threatened him not to come to his room, according to Alberta. His father, on the other hand, stormed upstairs to Alberta’s room, causing Gaye to leap from his bed.
When telling him to leave failed, Gaye allegedly shoved his father out of the room and began kicking and punching him. Later, Alberta informed Ritz: “Marvin slammed into him. I yelled for him to come to a halt, but he ignored me. He kicked my husband in the shins.”
Marvin Sr entered his bedroom minutes after being separated, returned with a.38 handgun his son had purchased for him, pointed the gun at Gaye, and shot him in the heart.
“I was about eight feet away from Marvin when my husband appeared at the bedroom door with his revolver,” Alberta explained. “My husband said nothing and simply pointed the gun at Marvin. I yelled, but it was a brief scream. My husband fired a shot, and Marvin yelled. I attempted to flee. After the first shot, Marvin slid to the ground.”
What happened to Marvin Gaye’s father?
“I didn’t mean to do that,” Marvin Sr was quoted as saying at the time.
On September 20, 1984, he pled no contest to a charge of voluntary manslaughter. Judge Gordon Ringer sentenced him to a six-year suspended sentence and five years of probation on November 2, 1984.
He cried as he told the court: “I’d bring him back if I could. I was frightened of him. I was afraid I was going to get wounded. I had no idea what was about to happen. I apologise profusely for all that occurred. I had a thing for him. Right now, I want he could walk through this door. Now I’m paying the price.”
He was compelled to enter a nursing home due to health difficulties. On October 10, 1998, nine days after his 84th birthday, he died of pneumonia.
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