Sir Paul McCartney stood in solidarity with protesters at the New York City March for Our Lives protest on Saturday and reminded the world of his own experience with gun violence.
Without going on camera, he told a CNN reporter: ‘As you know, one of my best friends was shot not far from here.’
It was an understated tribute to John Lennon, his Beatles bandmate who was gunned down outside The Dakota Building, where he lived, in by gunman Mark David Chapman in December 1980.
The New York City protest on Saturday was held at 72nd Street between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West, within eye shot of The Dakota Building and Strawberry Fields, the Central Park tribute created for Lennon after his death.
Sir Paul McCartney is pictured with his wife Nancy Shevell at the New York City March for Our Lives protest on Saturday where he paid tribute to his Beatles bandmate John Lennon. Lennon was gunned down in the exact location the march was held in 1980
McCartney was referring to his Beatles bandmate John Lennon who was gunned down outside his apartment in 1980. They are pictured together in 1963
It was created by Lennon’s widow Yoko Ono and landscape architect Bruce Kelly.
Ono, now 84, attended the women’s march in DC last January. It is not known if she attended any of Saturday’s anti-gun events.
The New York City protest was one of nearly 800 happening around the world on Saturday to call for gun reform.
The main protest was in Washington DC where 500,000 are expected to gather.
The global event has been orchestrated by the survivors of the Parkland massacre in Florida on February 14.
Lennon was shot outside The Dakota, the Manhattan building where he lived with Yoko Ono
Strawberry Fields in Central Park was created as a tribute to the singer after his death. Above, the memorial is seen in a file image
Lennon is pictured with his wife Yoko Ono in 1971, nine years before his death and a year after he left The Beatles
McCartney wore a t-shirt with the words ‘we can end gun violence’ written across it
The 75-year-old was excited to take part in the event and took photographs on his phone
Seventeen students and teachers died in the mass killing by gunman Nikolas Cruz.
Celebrities have been vocal in their support of the protests around the world and have donated their money.
All have however been eager not to snatch the spotlight from the events’ young organizers.
George Clooney and his wife Amal donated $500,000 to the Washington DC march as did Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg.
President Trump announced on Friday that the Department of Justice would issue a ‘rule’ banning bump stocks – the firearm accessory which can turn non automatic guns into semi-automatic and automatic killing machines.
‘Obama Administration legalized bump stocks.
‘BAD IDEA. As I promised, today the Department of Justice will issue the rule banning BUMP STOCKS with a mandated comment period.
‘We will BAN all devices that turn legal weapons into illegal machine guns,’ he said.
On February 14, gunman Nikolas Cruz did not use a bump stock to kill 14 students and three teachers.
The most infamous use of the accessory was by Stephen Paddock, the Las Vegas gunman who murdered 58 people by spraying bullets into a crowd at a country music festival in October. He later shot himself.
McCartney was at the New York City protest on Saturday when he made the remarks. Above, others at the event
The primary march was in Washington DC (above) where hundreds of thousands gathered