When Lennon passed by him, Chapman called out, “Mr. Lennon?”. As Lennon turned around Chapman pulled out a gun and fired five times. One bullet missed but the other four hit the back and the left shoulder of the singer who died of his injuries in the hospital. A legend said goodbye.
After Lennon collapsed, assassin Mark David Chapman remained at the site. He took out his favorite novel “The Catcher in the Rye” and began to read it. When the police arrived, Chapman, sitting calmly on the pavement, showed no resistance.
On December 8, 1980, clutching the musician’s latest record in his hand Chapman was peacefully waiting in front of the building called the Dakota in New York where Lennon lived. In the afternoon Lennon and his partner Yoko Ono appeared at the entrance of the building so as to leave for the nearby studio. Shocked by the sight of the superstar, Chapman was pushed toward Lennon by an amateur photographer standing by the almost paralyzed young man. Lennon willingly autographed the cover of his new album for Chapman. The artist couple returned home late in the evening. After lingering long hours outside the Dakota, Chapman had become determined to not give Lennon a second chance; he shot Lennon in cold blood.
Although repeatedly requested for conditional release, Mark Chapman is still serving his life sentence. He was denied parole for the fifth time this year in August.
Unexplainable murders are often surrounded by mystery, as was Lennon’s. According to one of the most bizarre theses, Chapman was a programmed killer. With strong tendency to commit suicide, and his mentally unstable character, Chapman was a perfect person for the CIA. Others say that Lennon’s murder can be linked to the CIA funded mind-alerting experiments, launched in the 1950s, that generated a series of political murders in the United States.
Possessing an extremely charismatic personality, Lennon, who often demonstrated against racism, war and oppression, could touch and mobilize tens of thousands of people. In an interview, Lennon’s younger son Sean explained that his father had posed a threat to the administration. However, following this logic a host of other pop and rock stars could have been a danger to the government, from Bob Dylan to the famous punk band, the Dead Kennedys.
The whole truth about the death of John Lennon may never be revealed, but the fact is that his oeuvre still affects people. A survey, carried out in the UK in 2002, showed that John Lennon ranked eighth among the 100 most significant British people.
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