The year was 1980. December 8th, 1980. Do you remember what you were doing? I was on the floor of our living room watching television when the brunette reporter broke in to announce that John Lennon had been shot and killed. I don’t remember if I cried but I do remember my father leaving the room. He was young then, my father that is. Today, I am 41 years old, one year past the age of Lennon when he was killed. I always find today rather tranquil in an odd way. Reflecting not just on the life of John Lennon, but my own and how easily it can change.
Lennon’s death made him a martyr of sorts. A deathly apparition in a long fight for peace on earth. Through music he touched our lives, through interviews he made us laugh and often reflect inwards upon ourselves. Far from a Saint, Lennon was his own messiah. A messenger not brought to the world by religion, but simply by the morals that humanity dictates.
I am a huge fan of The Beatles and always have been since I was a child. I own most of their original LP’s and all of the re-mastered CD’s. I even play Beatles Rock Band with my own son. The music of the Fab Four touched lives in many ways and while the lyrics of John Lennon were often confusing to breakdown and interpret, we all have tried at one point or another. Amazingly their music is still relevant today and widely popular by a whole new generation of fans.
Lennon’s legacy is not of a philanthropist, it’s not even of a musical icon like Jimmy Hendrix or Jim Croche or the myriad of other rock stars who died way too early. Lennon is and always has been something more. Egotistically innocent and genuinely in love with the world around him. In odd ways, Lennon was that friend you never meant. I often wonder what he would think of the world today. In the same manner that I often think of a WWII veteran and their views of todays’ America, or world.
I suppose that if Lennon was still alive today, his image would be nothing like it is in reality, a forged memory in time that ended on this day, 30 years ago. In death, John Lennon truly has given peace a chance.