"This year would have been the 70th birthday year for John if only he was here," Ono wrote of the legendary artist and peace activist, who was shot to death outside his and Ono's New York City apartment on Dec. 8, 1980. "But people are not questioning if he is here or not. They just love him and are keeping him alive with their love. I've received notes from all corners of the world to let me know that they were celebrating this year to thank John for having given us so much in his forty short years on earth."
"The most important gift we received from him was not words, but deeds," continued Ono, who invited fans to share their memories of Lennon online. "He believed in Truth, and had dared to speak up. We all knew that he upset certain powerful people with it. But that was John. He couldn't have been in any other way. If he were here now, I think he would have shouted so we can all hear it. That truth was important. Because without knowing all the truth of what we did, we could not achieve world peace."
Ono recently commemorated the 70th anniversary of Lennon's birthday, Oct. 9, with the "Gimme Some Truth" campaign, which features eight remastered Lennon solo albums and new titles including "Power to the People: The Hits," available in two versions; "Gimme Some Truth," a four-CD boxed set with songs divided thematically rather than chronologically; the "John Lennon Signature Box," with the eight remastered solo discs plus three discs of home tapes and Lennon's singles; and "Double Fantasy Stripped Down."
"I went to Abbey Road studios and remastered all John's songs; 121 of them," Ono told recently Billboard.com of the project. That was sort of a big job for me, and it was kind of trying in a way, both physically and emotionally. I didn't think I was going to feel anything personally because I have been doing John's work for the past 30 years...But when I was doing that, I suddenly realized this was a new experience for me in a sense that I suddenly discovered or started to discover how good John was as a professional musician and as an artist, and that really got to me. I wish John was here so I could say, "Hey, you're good."