John Lennon was SHOT IN THE BACK FOUR TIMES on December 8 th., 1980.
His killer, Mark David Chapman, will have a parole hearing this week at
the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, NY. This twisted coward has been held at
the Attica Correctional Facility for 31 years after pleading guilty to second-degree murder.
Chapman was sentenced to 20 years to life for his disregard of the sanctity of life.
This will be his seventh parole hearing.
Yoko Ono, John's widow, submitted a letter to the parole division wherein she stated
that Chapman continues to pose a risk to herself, Lennon's two sons, the public and himself.
Chapman's hope for parole has caused personal reflection on the influence John Lennon had
on my life and what should become of the murderer who cut that influence short.
Eleven weeks before the Beatles arrival to the USA,
President John F. Kennedy had been assassinated.
The entire US population was deeply saddened, shocked and depressed about the loss.
These four beautiful young men played simple, up beat, loving music
that proliferated hope and repaired the pain.
Beatlemania was born.
On August 15 th., 1965 the Beatles played a live concert at Shea Stadium in Queens
which was filled to capacity with 55,600 people. My father couldn't get tickets for my sister,
a girlfriend and me, so he drove us to the Shea parking lot where we could at least listen if not see.
The deafening exuberant holler of the crowd was nothing like I had ever heard before or since.
I could barely make out a few notes of their songs through the insane roar of the multitude within.
My father smiled and covered his ears and said we should leave.
That's when I heard John Lennon's voice shout above the racket,
"HEY ! HEY! HEY ! WHAT THE HELL IS THE MATTER WITH YOU ALL ???"
The crowd fell quiet immediately and John's voice announced,
"IF YOU DON'T STOP THE SHRIEKING, WE WON'T BE ABLE TO PLAY FOR YOU.
WE CAN'T EVEN HEAR OURSELVES OR EACH OTHER. OKAY ?"
The crowd murmured in confusion. The Beatles started up a new song, but the audience
was overly energized and the screams became more thunderous than before.
We tolerated the noise for awhile and realized hearing anything of value was hopeless.
We drove home with heavy hearted disappointment.
In time, I owned every Album the Beatles made and learned every song by heart.
As I sang along, I daydreamed about good times to come and pondered about
the injustices that people unwittingly inflicted upon each other.
Yeah, John Lennon had a very positive effect on my life.
One of John's lyrics is,
"...and in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make."
I hope that tune is played in Chapman's cell over and over and over again
until the day God takes him.