Gloria Hiroko Chapman, the wife of John Lennon's killer Mark David Chapman, once admitted her religious beliefs and the Bible helped her decide the destiny of her marriage.
Mark David Chapman is probably one of the most notorious killers of the '80s as he took the life of The Beatles star John Lennon. Although the crime was shocking, the fact that his wife, Gloria Hiroko Chapman, has not divorced him is even more surprising.
MARK BEFORE THE MURDER
Born in May 1955 in Fort Worth, Texas, Mark grew up with his US Air Force Sergeant father and nurse mother. He sadly faced a challenging childhood and did drugs before turning to God and becoming a born-again Christian at 16.
In 1977, he moved to Hawaii and unsuccessfully tried to kill himself. Later, he started working as a security guard and then a maintenance worker at Castle Medical Center in Kailua.
Gloria came into Mark's life in early 1978. At the time, she was a 26-year-old travel agent who devoted her life to her church and hospital, and he was a 22-year-old suicide survivor.
Still, she was attracted to him right from the start. Gloria revealed that he wanted her help as a travel agent to plan a vacation worldwide, and her love for him grew even while he was away.
When Mark came back to Hawaii, Gloria was waiting for him at the airport. They started dating the following night, and she eventually learned about his suicide attempt and mental illness.
Initially, she thought his mental problems had been solved after his time at a psychiatric ward. However, his behavior suddenly changed, and Gloria and the rest of the world suffered.
BEHAVIORAL CHANGE AND MURDER
After losing his job due to an argument with a nursing supervisor, Mark's patience faded away. He physically hurt Gloria and would come home drunk. She stood by his side because of her marital vows, though.
In October 1980, Mark told Gloria that he had planned to kill Lennon. She explained that he had traveled to New York to do so as he wanted to make a name for himself.
[Mark] banned [Gloria] from seeing him in jail for almost four years.
Once he was there, he couldn't do it. He even credited Gloria's love for saving him from committing the crime. However, two months later, on December 8, 1980, he killed Lennon in front of his wife, Yoko Ono.
Gloria admitted that she knew Mark had plans to return to New York but never thought he would actually kill Lennon, mainly because he told her he had thrown his gun into the ocean.
SHE KNEW IT WAS HIM
The darkest day of Gloria's life was December 8, 1980, as that's when she became the wife of John Lennon's killer. She learned about the crime while watching "Little House on the Prairie" on TV shortly after arriving home from work.
As soon as she read that the shooter was a "male Caucasian," she knew it was Mark. Things didn't get any easier after that. Although her friends and family encouraged her to get a divorce after the murder, she didn't do it.
Even Mark told her that parting ways was the right thing to do. Apart from cutting her off for a whole year, he banned her from seeing him in jail for almost four years.
Still, she made up her mind after seeking counsel in the Book of Malachi, which reads, "I hate divorce." Now, Gloria travels over 5,000 miles at least once a year to visit her husband in a New York prison.
Gloria once revealed she and Mark spend 44 hours together in a trailer home equipped with a little kitchen, a bathroom, and a TV. Once they are together, they prepare pizza and watch "Wheel of Fortune." Gloria added:
"If I didn't have Jesus in my life [when Mark murdered Lennon], I'd have probably done something to myself or gone crazy. I'm very well. I work and keep busy. I love life."
In September 2020, Mark was denied parole for the 11th time. In the hearing, he apologized for killing Lennon and admitted he committed the crime just for his own "glory."
Mark also acknowledged it was a "despicable act" and accepted the possibility of spending the rest of his life behind bars. He would be eligible for parole in 2022.
However, Lennon's widow admitted she was afraid that Mark could go after her or her son Sean if he walked out of prison because if he killed once, "he could do it again."
If you or someone you know is considering suicide, don't hesitate to get in touch with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "help" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.
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