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Lennon honored with artwork showing him in yellow submarine

July 30, 2015
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Yoko Ono, widow of John Lennon, second right, reacts after the unveiling of a 24' x 10' tapestry depicting the island of Manhattan as a yellow submarine piloted by a waving John Lennon at Ellis Island Wednesday, July 29, 2015, in New York. Standing with Ono are Bono, right, and The Edge, of the Irish rock band U2, third from right. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
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Yoko Ono, widow of John Lennon, second right, reacts after the unveiling of a 24' x 10' tapestry depicting the island of Manhattan as a yellow submarine piloted by a waving John Lennon at Ellis Island Wednesday, July 29, 2015, in New York. Standing with Ono are Bono, right, and The Edge, of the Irish rock band U2, third from right. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

NEW YORK (AP) — Standing in front of artwork depicting Manhattan as a yellow submarine and John Lennon as the pilot displaying the peace sign, Yoko Ono joined Bono and other guests to honor her late husband Wednesday.

Ono said the tapestry at Ellis Island in New York is “so special” and that the Beatles band member would have loved it.

Lennon appears on the artwork commissioned by Art for Amnesty founder Bill Shipsey to thank Ono on behalf of human rights group Amnesty International. The organization raised more than $5 million in royalties from covers of Lennon’s post-Beatles music since 2004.

The artwork showing Manhattan as a yellow submarine in a sea of blue is on display at the Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration. Music executive Jimmy Iovine, U2 rocker Bono, and his bandmate The Edge, covered the cost for New-York based Czech artist Peter Sis to design the commemorative piece.

“This is a very happy moment for the family,” Ono said.

At the event, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito declared July 29 as John Lennon Day.

The tapestry unveiling marks the 40th anniversary of Lennon getting U.S. residency. “John had to fight to get here,” Ono said.

Lennon who is originally from Liverpool, England, appeared in several deportation hearings in the early 1970s. He initially was not granted U.S. residency, but that decision was overturned in 1975.

Ono said Lennon was determined to stay in the U.S. partly because of the change he believed could happen.

“He knew that what we do in America is really going to affect the whole world,” Ono said.

Ono, a peace and human rights activist, said she will continue communicating with the public through art and music.

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