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Austin Man Buys Michael Jackson “Thriller” Jacket For $1.8 Million

Local entrepreneur Milton Verret bought the jacket worn by Michael Jackson in the iconic video for "Thriller" (above) at auction yesterday for $1.8 million, Reuters reports. Verret plans to put the black and red calf leather jacket on display at Dell Children’s Medical Center and then send it around the world for charity events.

This YouTube user caught Verret’s reaction on video as he was announced the winning bidder. 

In this subsequent video, a reporter asks Verret why he would want to spend so much money on a jacket.

“Money is relative,” Verret says, “because we’re going to use the jacket to raise money for children’s charities, so it’s very, very important that we do that.”

Another reporter asks Verret if he thinks the price is fair.

“I think it’s a fair price. I think the auctioneer ran a very organized, fair auction,” he said. “We actually owned the jacket at $1.3 million. He stopped, and reopened it up, so I’m fine with that.”

“The end point is to raise money for children’s charity, which is what Michael Jackson would have liked, and that’s what we’re going to do with it,” he said.

Verret told reporters the jacket was the most important piece of rock-n-roll memorabilia in history.

“Nothing will ever compare to it, ever,” he said.

In 2009, Verret donated eight “Big Guitars” to the city of Austin, sculptures that are still on display throughout the city.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. He covers the big projects that are reshaping how we get around Austin, like the I-35 overhaul, the airport's rapid growth and the multibillion dollar transit expansion Project Connect. He also focuses on the daily changes that affect how we walk, bike and drive around the city. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.