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The Rock-itt : December 2010
At about 2.50pm Australian time on the 9 th December 1980, Mark David Chapman shot five times at John Winston Ono Lennon four of those shots hitting him in the back. John fell dying in the entrance of the Dakota Building in New York. Chapman stood calmly to one side and read his copy of Catcher in the Rye until the police arrived and arrested him. John was rushed to the nearby Roosevelt Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 3.07pm Australian time. History shows that John Lennon died at 11.07pm on Decem ber 8 th New York time. Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life in Prison where, 30 years later he remains. John Lennon was cremated at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale New York, his wife Yoko Ono scattered his ashes in New York’s Central Park. Subsequently the Strawberry Fields memorial was created at the spot his ashes were scattered. John was just over forty years old; born on the 9th October 1940 in the Liverpool Maternity Hospital to Julia and Alf Lennon. He was named after his paternal grandfather John (Jack) Lennon and Winston Churchill who was at the time Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and leading the country in the war against Germany. John changed his name by deed poll on 22 April 1969, adding "Ono" as a middle name. He was not legally allowed to revoke his birth name Winston but rarely used it. For John to die in such a violent manner was all the more shocking because he had lived most of his at least, later life, espousing peace for the World. As founder member of The Quarrymen who eventually became The Beatles he helped change the World, musically, politically and socially. John was no saint, always a bit of a rebel but always true to his first love; Rock N’Roll. At the time of his death he had just finished recording tracks for what would eventually become the Milk and Honey album which was eventually released in 1984. He had already started to make plans to tour the Double Fantasy album which had just been released prior to his death. Intriguingly and remember this is 1980 before the mega rock shows started to happen, the stage set was to incorporate a giant crab with camera’s at the end of its claws. These would enable the show to be simultaneously screened on giant TV screens behind the stage, something that had not been done previously. John’s legendary writing partnership with Paul McCartney resulted in John, as a performer, writer or co-writer having 27 number one singles on the US Hot 100 chart. His album sales in the US alone stand at over 14 Million units.