On This Day…

December 8, 1980

Former Beatles member John-Lennon is killed by Mark David Chapman as he and Yoko Ono returned to their Manhattan apartment. Lennon had autographed an album for Chapman earlier that day. Chapman was angry at Lennon for remarks he had made years before stating that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus and that Lennon in his song Imagine “told us to imagine no possessions and there he was, with millions of dollars and yachts and farms and country estates, laughing at people like me who had believed the lies and bought the records and built a big part of their lives around his music.”
Chapman also identified with the protagonist Holden Caulfield from J. D. Salinger‘s book: The Catcher in the Rye, who represented teenage angst and rebellion and opposed phonies in the adult world. At the time of the shooting, Chapman had a copy of The Catcher in the Rye in which he had written “This is my statement,” signing it “Holden Caulfield.”