“Across the Universe” – In Memory of John Lennon

In Memory of John Lennon

Reliance Insurance Company’s Western New York Office was situated in the small town of Canandaigua about nineteen miles from my apartment in Geneva, New York. Each morning I would make the drive along quiet and narrow back roads where farms dotted the landscape and an occasional tractor was working the fields. I liked the drive because it gave me a time to reflect before reporting to work as a junior underwriter.  Usually the drive was a good vibe….but the morning of December 9th, 1980 was different.

Around 10:50 P.M. the previous evening, John Lennon had been murdered by an assassin outside his New York apartment. I had not learned the news until the next morning when I turned on my car radio. Now, as I somberly drove to work,  contemplating what had transpired. I was upset, angry and selfishly sad for myself because I wanted the Beatles to get together again as a band. I can unequivocally state the Beatles were the reason I picked up the guitar and chose a life dedicated to learning its intricacies.

Now thirty six years later, the senseless murder and loss of John Lennon still hurts. I have visited John’s childhood home of Mendips, at 251 Menlove Avenue, in Woolton, three times in the last few years. Upon each visit I was drawn to a red British postal letter box situated on the corner a few hundred feet from Mendips. I keep thinking of the some of John’s lyrics to his song “Across the Universe”.

Images of broken light which dance before me like a million eyes
They call me on and on across the universe
Thoughts meander like a restless wind inside a letterbox
They tumble blindly as they make their way across the universe”

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