Janet Jackson says her “incredible father” Joe Jackson helped make her the artist she is today.
Janet, 52, praised her dad on Friday night when she was honored with the first ever Impact Award during the Radio Disney Music Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, Calif.
During her acceptance speech, Janet said her mom Katherine Jackson, and her dad Joe, who was recently hospitalized with terminal cancer, greatly impacted her life.
“It’s beautiful, and it’s humbling to be recognized as someone who’s had a positive impact. But if I have been fortunate enough to impact others, it’s only because I, myself have been greatly impacted by positive people in my life,” she said to applause. “My mother nourished me with the most extravagant love imaginable, my father, my incredible father, drove me to be the best I can.”
Janet went on to thank her sisters and brothers, including Michael Jackson, who passed away in 2009.
“My siblings set an incredibly high standard, a high bar for artistic excellence. Every day I’m impacted by young people, such as you, whose precious idealism is demanding social change,” she said. “Sometimes though, having an impact can be a simple act. It can be a smile, a handshake, a hug.”
The When I Think Of You singer’s comments came just hours after news reports emerged saying Joe, 89, is hospitalized in Las Vegas as he battles terminal cancer.
A source told Entertainment Tonight that Joe has been ill for a while, but doctors recently let the family know his cancer is no longer treatable.
Members of the Jackson family, including Katherine, are said to have visited Joe in the hospital in recent days.
You can watch Janet’s speech below.