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John Lennon Remembered

Thirty years after his murder, the former Beatle lives on in the memories of fans

En español  |  Those of us who grew up in the 1960s were used to losing our musical heroes — Janis and Jimi and Keith Moon and Pigpen — Jim Morrison, Brian Jones — the list goes on.

But the common factor in so many of those deaths was the live fast, live hard rock 'n' roll lifestyle. We were also used to losing our political heroes to the lone gunmen who stalked our divided country as the '60's began (JFK) and ground on (RFK, MLK).

But what happened on Dec. 8, 1980, was without precedent. John Lennon, the man who represented our coming of age with the Beatles, and the hope and uncertainty of our lives after adolescence, was shot in New York. For some this meant that the ultimate musical reunion could never happen. For others, Lennon's death was the definitive end of a cultural and political moment in America. "Give peace a chance," John and Yoko sang. Now it would never have one.

Audio producer Paul Ingles searched the country to find those whose lives were shaken, changed, upended by that act of violence. Click the start arrow to listen to his audio montage, and add your own story.

Where were you the night of Dec. 8, 1980? What did John Lennon's assassination mean to you? Please add your comment below, then continue the discussion in AARP's Rock n' Roll community group.

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