Today (Oct. 9) marks what would have been John Lennon’s 72nd birthday, and though the former Beatle is no longer with us, his spirit and peace-promoting efforts are still alive and well.
Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, marked his birthday anniversary by awarding five worthy recipients the biennial Lennonono Grant For Peace for their peace activism in a ceremony held in Reykjavik, Iceland, reports NME.
Among the recipients include pop superstar Lady Gaga, who will donate her award to Elton John AIDS Foundation. Ono said of her in statement, “She is not only an artist, she is also an activist, using her art to bring better communication to the world. She is being acknowledged for her activism, and how her album ‘Born This Way’ has widely changed the mental map of the world.”
The remaining recipients include the recently imprisoned Russian punk rock group Pussy Riot, the late American peace activist Rachel Corrie, Author and activist John Perkins and journalist Christopher Hitchens.
The ceremony was topped off with Ono relighting the Imagine Peace Tower, which emits a glowing beam into the sky, in tribute of Lennon’s memory.
Ono wrote in a message to fans, “I hope the IMAGINE PEACE TOWER will give light to the strong wishes of World Peace from all corners of the planet and give encouragement, inspiration and a sense of solidarity in a world now filled with fear and confusion.”
You can see the Imagine Peace Tower lit up in honor of John Lennon’s birthday by going to imaginepeacetower.com.