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The story of John Lennon's final phone call


At the time of his murder, John Lennon’s life was no longer the chaotic mess it had been for many years prior. Living in New York, the former Beatle had finally found a level of comfort thanks to his peaceful, family orientated existence.

After The Beatles split, Britain became too much of a suffocating place for Lennon, and he scuttled away from the noise by moving to the US. However, what he didn’t suspect was that he’d never once again step foot in his homeland. Tragically, he was plotting to change that before his life was robbed from him.

It was easy for Lennon to become estranged from his loved ones during his decade of absence. However, there was one person that he stayed close to throughout his time in New York; his aunt Mimi. Once he tasted fame and moved across the Atlantic, naturally, Lennon drifted apart from most of his family, but never Mimi. The musician would call her every single week without fail, including the night before his death.

Mimi raised Lennon after filing a complaint to social services about the circumstances his mother, Julia, was raising him in, and she agreed to hand over custody of John to Mimi. His mother remained a presence in his life until she sadly died after getting hit by a car when he was a teenager. With his father, Alf, out of the picture, Mimi was the only family member he could turn to, and they forged an unbreakable bond.

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Lennon never forgot the kindness that his aunt Mimi showed him. After The Beatles achieved success, one of his first purchases was a lavish property by the coast in Sandbanks for his aunt.

His final phone call only came to light in 2020 when a letter written by Mimi Smith to the Daily Express journalist Judith Simons went to auction. Simons had written a piece that collated all the tributes to Lennon after the murder. After reading it, Mimi felt compelled to contact the writer to thank her for the piece.

Mimi wrote, “Dear Judith, Thank you for your letter, kind thoughts. I’m trying to accept this terrible thing which has happened, but finding it very hard. He had such faith himself, I’m trying to do the same.

“He phoned the night before, witty, funny, bubbling over with excitement, coming over very soon. Couldn’t wait to see me. So I’m glad of that. If I’m in London, I’ll get in touch with you. Kind thoughts to you too. Mimi.”

While there is no consoling factor surrounding Lennon’s murder, at least he was in a positive place at the time of his death. However, this also makes it even more devastating, rumours were rife that Lennon was preparing to return to the road, and he never got to have that one last face-to-face interaction with his beloved aunt.