Also remembering today the other victims of crime, the survivors.

34 Responses to “Also remembering today the other victims of crime, the survivors.”

  1. Lizzie says:

    That is a terrible photo. How much pain!

  2. Yes, yes it is. Those poor women and the horrors they witnessed.

  3. Nick D. says:

    Why post this?

  4. Tammy says:

    I thought long and hard about posting this pic, i could have posted a nice photo of John from December the 8th, but that’s not how it ended. For me i like to think the clock froze at 10.49pm, one minute before the car pulled up, that’s how i cope, the imensity of the loss is so great i can’t comprehend it actually happening.

    Last night I read a Vanity Fair article on Jackie Kennedy and her very probably suffering post traumatic stress syndrome after Novemeber 22nd. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if that were so, she endure a nightmarish horror, unimaginable fear and stress, but all that seems to be remembered is how strong she was, how she held the nation together, but just imagine what was happening behind closed doors.

    Same for Yoko, as i remember it people were pretty quick to default to the predictable ‘How cold she appeared’ and how it was all ‘Business as usual’, but never questioning why that may have been, like Jackie, what horrors and fear and terror poor Yoko must have felt and endured, i simply can’t imagine.

    I actually heard from someone who was in the Emergency dept, the description was sickening, Yoko was smashing her head into the concrete floor and had to be restrained from further self harm. So yes, I struggled wether I should post this pic, but the pain endured by those who survived these attacks was, and probably still is immense. I feel their pain, survival and strength should be remembered and acknowledged, not glossed over because it may be uncomfortable.

    I remembered Jackies ‘Let them see what they have done’, and Yoko publishing the photo of Johns glasses (which i also considered posting).

    I don’t feel the world can afford to feel any less sadness or horror at this loss, or the aftermath, which Yoko herself says she lives with every moment of every day. These violent murderous horrors are still happening day in and day out, so, today, as well as remembering John and the ache of his loss, i’m also taking a moment to acknowledge the the reality of the utter agony of the survivors.

  5. Lordcat says:

    I’m not the worlds biggest Yoko fan.
    Yet I’ve never really thought about what she witnessed that night.
    It must of been horrific whichever way you look at it.

  6. Kwai Chang says:

    The healing/curing will be ongoing for most
    although many will never attain such a status
    There is nothing morbid about remembering loss
    fear is the only darkness
    to dwell in the past
    is to rob oneself of the present
    but to ignore the past
    may rob oneself of the future.
    Just as Elvis died when he went into the Army
    for The Beatles…for me, The Beatles are a force of Nature
    that is very much alive and cannot be expected to ever end
    ….as long as the music keeps playing…
    for their music is all we’ve ever had
    and that will never die
    even when we’re ALL gone
    but when will that be?
    It’s hard to say because
    Beatle music keeps me seeing the world
    through the eyes of a child
    and beyond to the Hope for our Future!

  7. Jeff says:

    spring passes
    and one remembers one’s innocence
    summer passes
    and one remembers one’s exuberance
    autumn passes
    and one remembers one’s reverence
    winter passes
    and one remembers one’s perseverance

    there is a season that never passes
    and that is the season of glass

    Y.O. ’81
    JWOL 1940 – 1980

  8. Kwai Chang says:

    Calendars should be made of glass

  9. Cara says:

    I’m a big fan of this blog and I think that you mean well, but I strongly disagree with your decision to post this photograph, as well as the description of Yoko’s reaction to learning that John was dead.

    Those were private moments. She did not choose to have her photograph taken, to walk into a sea of flashing cameras after her husband had been murdered. She has never talked about her immediate reaction in that waiting room. It was a violation by the doctor to describe that scene to the press, and it was a violation for the press to take and publish these photographs. Would you want to anguish on your face moments after the person you loved most died spread all over the world? I would not.

  10. Nick D. says:

    @Cara
    I have to agree with you. It’s not really glossing over anything but we should just try and remember the positive, not the negative. None of us were in Yoko’s shoes. Sorry.

  11. Nick D. says:

    Oh, and from what I read…the jerk of all jerks struggled too.

  12. Michael says:

    I have no problem with you posting this, Tammy. It is just a huge part of the memory of that day. Not a pleasant one and not one on which I would want to dwell. But important, nonetheless. It may sound goulish, but I’ve even learned to accept the fact that a death photo exists and is also a part of the overall story of John’s life. That he attained the kind of fame (some painfully negative) that would prompt someone to want to take such a photo. To me, these are horribly real parts of John’s life (and death) story. Part of what makes it so incredible! John was bigger than life… and bigger than death.

  13. Alex of Bronx says:

    Never a Yoko fan, but always hated this picture, poor thing , wouldn’t wish that whole experience on my worst enemy. I believe this was the cover of the NY POST at one point and I remember they printed the death pix also.

  14. Jeff says:

    Yoko herself used that photo of John herself in the video she made for “Woman” and sent to Barbara Walters to be aired on 20/20. John and Yoko also used the My Lai Massacre photo on the sleeve of one of their 45s.

    Tammy’s posting is not exploitation – it is a statement of grieving. This was one awful moment that hurt us all very deeply. We did not experience a fraction of what Yoko and the family did but we all personally felt the loss. The jerk of all jerks, indeed.

  15. Jeff says:

    Sorry, everyone. The second “herself” above was a typo. Dear Tammy, please edit if you will. Thanks.

  16. As I remember it Yoko used this photo in the ‘Woman’ video herself?, correct me if I’m wrong. It’s cool, I understand some being upset by this, and that’s interesting, I’m not judging, it is confrontational, and in many ways more upsetting than the photo of Johns glasses. The description of Yoko’s reaction in the hospital has been relayed by several people, most chillingly reenacted by Yoko on the Season of glass album, the agony and reality of the moment was just that, agony, but people seem to have found it easy to gloss over that reality in their subsequent assessment and judgement of Yoko.

    There is a much bigger picture at play here, how society and the press seem to tilt and treat violence, and all too soon sweep it under the carpet, or get distracted by another angle. We seem to be able to cope with the actual awful reality of what happened for a very short time before ‘Lets dig deeper now to see what gossip we can find’. It happens to many, it happened to Jackie where within weeks the old gossip mags were speculating and inferring all sorts of things, and seriously, lets not even start with what was said about Yoko and what she was dragged through. The bottom line is, these were/are real people (ie Yoko) who really did suffer suffer unimaginable horror, but history, time, vengeance and profit has glossed over that, and I’m sad about that, and I’m ashamed and offended for them.

  17. last night on his national radio show alice cooper talked about what happened on 12/8/80 and said “i’d like to play my favorite solo song by John, called Woman. And I’m dedicating to it to my friend John who was tragically taken from us”.

  18. MarkZapp says:

    This site is dedicated to The Beatles. The good, the bad and the ugly things that happened to them should all be included. Sure they have provided us with entertainment and, yes, even escapism for many years but they were human beings first and we love them so much we want to share even the most unimaginable with each other. It’s easier to deal with the grief. Of course this photo is painful but it is real and it happened. We are fans but Yoko was MARRIED to him. It is good not to gloss over the worst events. It can’t all be “pizza and fairy tales” as John once said. I still get choked up remembering the awful event of 34 years ago but this site is to be shared by fans of John and The Beatles. Shocking photos like this are not the norm here but neither was what happened on December 8, 1980. Let us all remember his music that changed the world, his humor and his efforts to make this a better world.

  19. Lizzie says:

    Many times over these 34 years I have thought about what Yoko went through. I don’t think it’s a bad thing that you posted this photo.

  20. Cara says:

    I’m the other Cara, from California, who posts here more often (or at least more recently) than the Cara above. I support your posting of the photo and I appreciate your reasons behind doing so. Just like I supported Yoko’s use of the photo of John’s bloody glasses. John has always been my musical hero, but we need to remember that he was also a human being – someone’s husband, father, brother, friend. However heartbroken I was when he was murdered, I can’t even begin to imagine what Yoko must have felt. And I think it’s wonderful that we take a moment to honor that.

  21. George A says:

    Hi Tammy,

    The photo is overly emotional, and it hurts to look at. But, as awful as it is, it needs to be seen. Also Tammy, thank you for eloquent comments, and equating Jackie Kennedy. Often, the media glosses over, “We lost John on Dec 8” or “He died at an early age”, but as painful and tearful as it is to say, he was Murdered!

    Also, from Jackie Kennedy bio via wiki: After JFK’s death, Jackie refused to remove her blood-stained clothing and regretted having washed the blood off her face and hands. She continued to wear the blood-stained pink suit as she went on board Air Force One and stood next to Lyndon Johnson when he took the oath of office as President. She told Lady Bird Johnson, “I want them to see what they have done to Jack”.

    I love the all music, from “Aint She Sweet”, “Cry For A Shadow” to “Free As A Bird” and “Real Love.” We’re all living on “Borrowed Time”, but need to keep Giving Peace A Chance.

    George A on Long Island.

    PS. I also appreciate the finely written comments from MarkZapp, Jeff and Cara from California. Be well.

  22. All comments are valued and valid. We as fans don’t need reminding perhaps as much, but over the years I feel the reality of what happened to Yoko has been somewhat forgotten by the general public, or those with a more cursory interest. Books and perceptions spread by others almost become fact, ie, that Jackie was a gold digger who only married for money, or that Yoko was cold and heartless after Johns murder, but very few discuss why these survivors of violence acted in they way they did. ‘If’ you was indeed cold, aloof, disconnected, business as usual after this horror, nobody ever asks why that may have been, or why Jackie married Ari, they just seem to be judged for these actions without hardly a word of dicussion ‘why’. I have my theories and thoughts on this, it’s taken me to grow a lot older to comprehend and understand these feelings, I hope to expand on them in a future blog post.

  23. Lizzie says:

    I read all the comments and agree with most of them, but I totally agree with George A: John did not “die young” or “was taken from us at an early age”, he was BRUTALLY MURDERED IN FRONT OF HIS BELOVED WIFE. Just looking at Yoko’s face in that picture brings tears to my eyes. I wish I could give her a big hug. When I saw her here in Rio in 2009, tears rolled down my face. She looked so frail, so tiny! I remembered seeing her beside John so many times, and how he always physically protected her with his arms. I cannot begin to imagine what it must be to have those images imprinted in your brain, and HOW MUCH she must miss him. Neither can I imagine what it must have been to have your daughter DISAPPEAR and not know where she was for so many years. I once read that Yoko kept buying her gifts throughout the years, until one of her friends reminded her that her daughter was now an adult and would never fit into the clothes she was buying for her… As a mother and grandmother, that really touched my heart. So much pain…

  24. MarkC says:

    It is simply the most poignant and most representative photo of that terrible day.

  25. anonymoustill says:

    When you have John & Yoko posing naked on an LP cover for the world to see, I’m at a loss as to how anyone can object to a photo like this. The photo reminds us all of what we’d much rather not remember, but it is part of his legacy and as such should be represented here. If that night were constantly revisited, I would think a lot of us would stop visiting here as the general timbre of this blog is Fun. That we remember that damned night at this time of year is fitting as we all share our grief together. We can’t forget it even 34 years later. The photo hammers it home even though I’d like to tear it to pieces, go back in time, and change everything like everyone else here.

    I came close to sharing my recollections when Tam posted the new pic from 8/80 a few days ago. I loved reading about how everyone felt when Starting Over was released and Double Fantasy came out. I was too young to get it. At that time, for me, it was all about Paul as he was always making music. I do remember George’s Blow Away on the radio, though. I’ll share my own memories now as maybe it can serve to put everything in some kind of perspective.

    Get this folks… I actually “met” John in Bermuda the summer of 1980. And you know what stuck out in my 11 year-old mind? Sean! I was envious as his hair was so long. My folks never let me grow mine out even though I always wanted to and here was a little kid younger than I and he got away with it! I only remember John because I remember Sean so well. He talked with a little lisp and was very talkative while John tried to keep him quiet. I remember John’s voice which was even different from the “typical” English accent you hear on that island and John calling him “Sean.” He had the 50’s styled glasses and was wearing a frayed straw hat. In all honesty, he looked kind of creepy in part because you could sense he didn’t want to be bothered, but at the same time I was drawn to him because he gave his kid so much leeway. I was a Beatle fan even then but would never have known it was John. He wasn’t even on the radar for me. If it was McCartney I would have pee’d myself. Don’t bother rubbing in what a tool I was over this please! I know, I know. And it gets worse with time. I turned out to be such a huge fan. To borrow a line from another pop legend, “this is the strangest life I have ever known.”

    Fast forward to that “damned evening.” It’s near midnight and way past my bedtime. I’m leaving my aunt’s apartment in NYC’s north end near Columbia University. We visited my cousin who was home from studying abroad but her plane was late coming in. My dad’s grumbling about work tomorrow morning but we’re all drawn to police lights and a crowd gathering at this building as we’re leaving the city to go back to New Jersey. We’re all wondering what’s going on but never bother to roll the windows down and ask people. NYC was quite different back then and my dad was in no mood to care. He just wanted to get home, but it was such a scene that even though I was dead tired, I had to take a look. It was only the next morning that we realized what had happened and it was several years later that I realized I had “met” John and Sean. Sometimes life is too ironic to contemplate.

    Fast forward several more years. A friend of that same cousin we were visiting that night who I had known by then for very many years offhandedly related her memories of 12/8. She was a nurse in the ER and was the first to mention the man on the gurney looked like John Lennon, which scarcely went noticed at first. She didn’t know I was that big of a fan but boy did she bend my ear on that occasion! Trust me everyone, while the pictures are deeply saddening, they have nothing on what went on in that ER. She was a witness whom I’d known for years but I never had a clue. We just got to talking and… Sometimes life is way, way, way, too ironic to contemplate.

    I’m sharing this here only because I’m with people who might care and find it interesting. It’s all part of the healing process, even though we’ll never get over it. And for me, that’s why even though it hurts, it’s necessary to have that photo on this blog. The picture speaks volumes, but in some respects our own recollections speak just as loud because they’re personal. I wouldn’t have been moved to write this if I hadn’t been here to share the recollections from others and draw some inspiration from it.

    Thanks for sharing everyone. Hope my memories helped to make your day like yours did for me.

  26. Lizzie says:

    Thank you, anonimoustill, that was quite interesting, coincidences! I probably have said this here before, but the guy who was driving the reporters that were interviewing John that day is Brazilian, his name is Rui and I met him in New York. He spent quite a while with the limo outside the Dakota waiting, and in the end John and Yoko came out too and John asked him if he would take him and Yoko to the studios since their car hadn’t arrived. I have a long typed interview I did with him. Next time I see it in my files I will share with you all. It’s been good to read all your thoughts. It’s never an easy time of year…

  27. trevor says:

    You did nothing wrong Tammy….I dont know what all the drama about this photo is its been widely circulated in books magazines newspaper for 34 years……Trevor…….rip JL

  28. I don’t feel i’ve done anything wrong at all, and it has done what i’d hoped, got people to question, or remember and acknowledge Yokos side of the tragedy, which even by myself is sometimes forgotten, or diminished.

  29. mcarp555 says:

    Please recall Yoko’s own words regarding John’s glasses on the cover of “Season of Glass”:

    “I wanted the whole world to be reminded of what happened. People are offended by the glasses and the blood? The glasses are a tiny part of what happened. If people can’t stomach the glasses, I’m sorry. There was a dead body. There was blood. His whole body was bloody . . . That’s the reality . . . He was killed. People are offended by the glasses and the blood? John had to stomach a lot more.”

    I agree that this blog is fun, and we all come here to enjoy it. But I also agree that it’s right at least one day a year, we take a moment to remember. And not just to remember John, or Yoko. But to remember that we should think globally and act locally, as John would want. Maybe donate to an anti-gun lobby. Write your leaders in support of condemning violence. Help somebody who might need it. Do something.

    Sometimes we need a little discomfort to remind us that we’re human. This picture just such a nudge.

  30. Kwai Chang says:

    I wish every picture generated this much emotion.
    Maybe, we don’t know how good we really have it…
    (I’m sure I don’t anyway…)

  31. i dont have a problem with tammy posting the pic. i’m surprised at the reaction because that pic has been seen SO MANY times over the years. and furthermore, it’s not as if the intent of this blog is to sell anything, like newspapers or the broadcast media.

    i do sympathize with yoko. tremendously. someone once said this pic was taken minutes (or maybe just moments) after the doctors told her john was gone. she was still in a state of shock. while this lack of privacy is the price that famous people like Yoko pay, i still sympathize over the angst she went thru. having to deal with her personal loss AND also having to go home to somehow find words to explain to her son what happened…unimaginable.

  32. btw i mean no offense to anyone who disagrees with my comments. we all have our opinions and are entitled to them.

  33. Kathy says:

    Well said Johnny! I 100% agree

  34. Bill C says:

    Reminds me of Yokos input on the LOVE show in Vegas – saying something like well it can’t be all ‘happy-go-lucky’

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