John Lennon fans offer peaceful tributes to slain Beatle at Central Park’s Strawberry Fields memorial 35 years after his death
BY JOSEPH STEPANSKY, STEPHEN REX BROWN
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Tuesday, December 8, 2015
John Lennon fans gathered Tuesday in Central Park in recognition of the 35th anniversary of the legendary Beatle’s assassination.
About 50 people, many of them with guitars, sang classic hits like “Imagine” and “Give Peace A Chance” at the Strawberry Fields memorial near W. 72nd St.
Tourists and a few locals lamented the loss of the magnificent musician and crusader for peace who died at 40.
Billy Ogansanti arranges flowers on the “Imagine” mosaic in remembrance of John Lennon on the 35th anniversary of his murder.
“I don't think a person who was alive at the time can’t remember where they were when Lennon was killed,” said Richmond Fill, 69, a retired U.S. Airways supervisor, who traveled from Easton, Penn.
“Just think of all the music he could have created in 35 years.”
Meanwhile, a sobering statistic illustrated the scourge of gun violence that has continued after his death at the hands of a mentally ill man with a .38 special revolver.
Flowers are placed on the mosaic named after Lennon's song "Imagine" at Strawberry Fields in Central Park.
Roughly 1.15 million people have been killed by guns in the U.S. since Mark David Chapman shot Lennon outside the Dakota apartment building on W. 72nd St., according to New Yorkers Against Gun Violence.
The statistic was first cited by Rolling Stone.
Back at Central Park, people placed flowers on the “Imagine” mosaic alongside a picture of Lennon and a sign that read “35 years.”
People take photos of the memorial on the 35th anniversary of Lennon's death.
Gabriel Bellotti, 65, a cab driver from Bayonne, N.J., picked “Here Comes the Sun” on his red guitar.
“You come, you meet people, you listen, and you just celebrate peace,” Bellotti said.
“I never imagined it would be 35 years later ... I was really broken up about it.”
Chapman turned 60 this year.
He remains behind bars in the Wende Correctional Facility in upstate Alden, six hours away from the scene of the infamous ambush.
THE DAY ‘LOVE’ DIED: December 8th marks 35th grim anniversary of John Lennon’s murder
BY LARRY MCSHANE
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Saturday, December 5, 2015