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John Lennon

December 8, 1980 - Remembering the night John Lennon was Taken From Us

by Pete Karas

Dec 8, 2008 - 7:44 AM

Twenty-eight years ago tonight, John Lennon was taken from us. I'll never forget that horrible night for as long as I live.

On December 8, 1980, at approximately 11:30 or so, I was in a 7-Eleven at the counter getting change for a arcade game when a guy walked in, who had appeared to have been drinking, asked the employee behind the counter if they had the January issue of Playboy. He told the employee that there was an interview with John Lennon in it and mentioned that he was shot earlier in the evening. That's when I immediately asked him what he was talking about. He said John Lennon was shot outside of his apartment in New York City not long ago. I thought... shot in hand, leg, or something minor. My brain just couldn't process anything worse. That's when he said he was shot dead. I told him that I didn't believe him at all. He said it was the truth and that they were playing Beatles music on the radio already.

I then ran out to my car. I sat there for minute or two (it felt like hours). I remember thinking that if I don't turn on the radio, John will still be alive. My hands were shaking when I did turn on the radio. I heard the music of the Beatles right away. I hit the scan button and heard it on almost every station that it landed on. I also heard the news reports that John was shot dead by some wacko guy from Hawaii. I didn't understand, nor did I know what to do with myself.

When I went home soon after, I woke up my parents and my brother to tell them the news. They were all shocked just as everyone else was. I then went down to the basement where my stereo was. I got a cassette, put it in the recorder, and started scanning the radio dial to record what I was witnessing that night. By then it was 3:00 in the morning. Seventy-five percent or more of the stations were playing John Lennon and Beatles music. I still have that one-hour cassette and listened to some of it not long ago. It took me back to that night as if it happened yesterday.

Although we remember all the good that John did for us and the wonderful music he left behind, we still can't help but remember the night he was taken away from us. I know I never will.

In memory of John. 1940-1980.

Peace & love to all,

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