He created the Motown sound with hits like “Let’s Get it On,” “Se*xual Healing,” and “I Heard it Through the Grapevine.” Marvin Gaye Jr. was one of the best soul singers of all time. The singer d*ied a sad de*ath in 1984 when his own father shot and k*illed him.

After Marvin Gaye Jr. broke up a fight between his parents on April 1, 1984, at the family home in the West Adams neighbourhood of Los Angeles, California, Marvin Gaye Sr. shot him three times.

When Gaye Jr. got to California Hospital Medical Centre, he was already dead. He was buried at Forest Lawn Cemetery, but later his body was burned, and his ashes were spread out in the Pacific Ocean.

Who Was Marvin Gaye Sr.?

The first Marvin Gaye was a Pentecostal minister who got married to Alberta Cooper in 1935. She had a son named Michael, but Marvin Sr. wouldn’t raise someone else’s son, so he sent Michael to live with his sister-in-law.

They had four kids together: Jeanne, Frankie, Zeola, and Marvin Jr. Additionally, Gaye Sr. had a son named Antwaun Carey with a woman he was seeing someone else.

Marvin Sr. had a lot of affairs while he was married to Alberta. Her strong religious faith was what made her decide to stay in this dangerous place.

Gaye Sr. was very strict about rules. The kids said he asked them questions about Bible verses and would hit them if they got them wrong. Besides that, he beat his wife badly and became hooked on drinking and cross-dressing.

The punishments that Marvin got were the worst. From the time he was seven years old, Jeanne said Marvin got a lot of “brutal whippings.” Saskatchewan told Ritz magazine in 1979:

“Marvin was never what my husband wanted.” He did not like him at all. He said he didn’t think he was really his child. I told him that wasn’t true. He was sure Marvin was his. He didn’t love Marvin, though, and he didn’t want me to love Marvin either. That’s something Marvin knew when he wasn’t very old.

Years after his de*ath, Marvin told reporters, “Living with Father was like living with a king—an all-cruel, all-powerful, all-changing king.”

An Argument Ends Marvin’s Life

Alberta and Marvin Gaye Sr. often fought. The couple fought about a lost insurance policy letter in the days before the mu*rder. On March 31, the fight moved to Marvin’s bedroom, where Marvin Jr. heard his dad yelling at his mom, which made him mad. Marvin Jr. told his dad to not bother his mom.

The fight about the paper started up again on April 1, 1984, around 12:30 p.m. His father heard him yelling downstairs from his bedroom that he should talk to him in person if he had something to say.

Marvin Sr. barged into Marvin Jr.’s room while the younger Gaye told him to leave. He began yelling at Alberta, who was in the room. Marvin Jr. jumped out of bed and told his dad to leave the room. When he wouldn’t give in, Marvin Jr. pushed him out and started hitting and kicking him.

After they went their separate ways, Marvin Sr. came back into the bedroom soon after with a.38 pistol that Marvin Jr. had bought for him. He raised the gun to his son’s head and shot him in the heart right away. Three more times, he fired, and each time, a bullet hit Marvin Jr.

Gaye Sr. Goes to Trial

Marvin Sr. said “I didn’t mean to do it,” when reporters asked why he shot his son.

On September 20, 1984, he pleaded not guilty to voluntary manslaughter. In court, he told the judge, “I would bring him back if I could.” I was scared of him. I believed I would get hurt. I had no idea what would happen. I’m truly sorry for all that took place. I liked him. He should be able to walk through this door right now. Now I have to pay for it.”

In November 1984, Gaye Sr. was given a six-year sentence with five years suspended and five years of probation by Judge Gordon Ringer.

Wow. It’s crazy that Marvin Gaye Sr. beat his wife and kids badly and then said he was afraid of Marvin Jr. when his son got big enough to fight back. Think about that.

He was 84 years old when he died on October 10, 1998.

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