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This Day in History

World History

Monday, December 8, 1980. :   Singer, songwriter and former member of "The Beatles", John Lennon, is murdered.

     John Lennon was born John Winston Lennon on 9 October 1940. As his mother was unable to care for him after his father walked out, Lennon lived with his Aunt Mimi at Mendips throughout his childhood and adolescence. His mother taught him to play the banjo, retaining an interest in her son's life until she was killed in an accident in 1958. Lennon was a non-conformist who dropped out of school to devote his time to developing his musical talents. He joined up with Paul McCartney and George Harrison to form a band, taking the name "Johnny and the Moondogs", followed by "The Silver Beetles", which was later shortened to "The Beatles". Lennon is considered to be one of the most influential singer-songwriter-musicians of the 20th century, profoundly affecting the direction of rock 'n' roll music.

Lennon was assassinated by a deranged fan on 8 December 1980, as he and his wife Yoko Ono returned to their New York apartment after a recording session. The fan, Mark David Chapman, had earlier asked for, and received, Lennon's autograph on an album. It was the last autograph Lennon ever signed. Chapman later claimed he had heard voices in his head telling him to kill Lennon. Chapman has failed three times in his own bid for freedom, and remains serving a life sentence in Attica prison near New York.

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