John Lennon Too Soon Gone

John Lennon Too Soon Gone

John Lennon Too Soon Gone
John Lennon and Yoko Ono, 1980

Too Soon Gone

For the parents of Boomers, December 7 is the day that would live in infamy. 

For Boomers, we all know where we were crying on December 8, 1980 after hearing that Mark David Chapman shot John Lennon five times and killed him. 

Too Soon Gone.
Earlier that day on an ignorantly innocent morning, Rolling Stone photographer Annie Liebowitz had met John and Yoko to take a portrait. One of the most photographed couples in history posed for another historic photo. 

Historic in too many ways.

John Lennon Too Soon Gone

Liebowitz recalled years later that Rolling Stone editor Jann Wenner "never told me what to do, but this time he did. He told me, 'Please get me some pictures without [Yoko].' Then I walk in, and the first thing [Lennon] says to me is 'I want to be with her.'" An angry Liebowitz reluctantly agreed to John's request, and the image she captured proved to be one of her most famous—one that Lennon told her on the spot had "captured [his] relationship with Yoko perfectly."
John Lennon Too Soon Gone
From the NY Times: A crowd began to gather at West 72d Street and Central Park West immediately after John Lennon...was shot and killed last night. Some of the first people to gather were eyewitnesses to the murder. Others had been only a block away. (NYT article)


John Lennon Too Soon Gone
Strawberry Fields Memorial in Central Park, NYC
Mark David Chapman pleaded guilty and remains in prison. In 2000 he became eligible for parole. It was denied and he has continued to request parole every two years (again as permitted) since then. All have been denied.

In 2014 he said, "At that time, I wasn't thinking about anybody else, just me....But now, you know, obviously through people's letters and through things I hear a lot of people were affected here. I am sorry for causing that type of pain. I am sorry for being such an idiot and choosing the wrong way for glory." (USA Today article)

John Lennon Too Soon Gone
On August 29, 2016, a three-person state parole board panel rejected Chapman's ninth parole attempt. In part, the panel stated, ""In spite of many favorable factors, we find all to be outweighed by the premeditated and celebrity seeking nature of the crime." Also that, "From our interview and review of your records, we find that your release would be incompatible with the welfare of society and would so deprecate that seriousness of the crime as to undermine respect for the law."

His next parole hearing is scheduled for August 2018

Too soon gone. Too soon gone. Too soon gone. Too soon gone.


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