LOS ANGELES – When Michael Jackson (search) issued a brief statement Tuesday regretting the passing of one of his mentors, John H. Johnson (search), the subtext that caught the eye of many was where the statement came from: the office of Raymone K. Bain (search), the spokeswoman who had not been heard from since just before Jackson's trial ended.
Bain, who is based in Washington, D.C., confirmed by phone that she continues to work for Jackson. She said she remains in touch with the singer, who was last reported to be in Bahrain with his children.
"He is relaxing on vacation and doing well," she said, but declined to say anything further.
Just before Jackson was acquitted of molestation charges June 13, a notice was posted on a Jackson Web site saying that Bain had been terminated. She never confirmed it.
Bain had been an extremely visible spokeswoman for Jackson during the trial, appearing on TV talk shows and holding press conferences on his behalf outside the courthouse.
The statement she issued on Jackson's behalf Tuesday said: "I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of my mentor and friend, John Johnson. I send my heartfelt sympathy to his wife, Eunice, and his daughter, Linda."
Johnson, who died Monday at the age of 87, was the founder of Ebony and Jet magazines.