From Police Heroes, a book by author Chuck Whitlock:
Officer John Lennon was working as a court liaison in Jersey City when he heard about the attack on the World Trade Center and joined in the rescue effort.
Lennon, forty-four, who went by the nickname “Jay”, grew up in Brooklyn where he was a star basketball player at Nazareth Regional High School. He graduated from St. Francis College. He and his father coached basketball for the Howell (New Jersey) Central Little League for twelve years. A resident of Howell, Lennon also coached baseball and basketball at a local school for two years.
Lennon had been in the Port Authority’s ESU from 1993 until early in 2001. He helped with the recovery effort during the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. During his career, he earned three Excellent Police Duty Citations. He could have retired with twenty years of service two years ago, but he enjoyed work too much to quit.
He is survived by his wife, Patricia, and their four children: Melissa, John III, Kathleen and Christopher.
Portraits of Grief, The New York Times
A Perfect Mesh
When your name was John Lennon, you had to go with a nickname. John Lennon’s father, also John, went by Jack. John Lennon himself went by Jay. His own son, John III, is sticking with John, though his mother, Patricia, said, “I tell him, watch what you do.”
With the other children, Melissa, Katie and Christopher, there’s no issue. Mr. Lennon, 44, was a Port Authority police officer who worked out of Jersey City and served as a court liaison who transported prisoners. He lived with his family in Howell Township, N.J. Patricia and John met when they were 15, living in nearby neighborhoods of Brooklyn. He went to an all-boys school and she went to an all-girls school. A mutual friend introduced them. She was quiet. He was gregarious. A perfect mesh. Soon after, they became a permanent item.
“It was love at first sight,” Mrs. Lennon said. “I never had a desire to look at anyone else and neither did he. We saw each other every day.” They were married at 23.
“He made a comment to a friend a few years after we met that at 16 he knew I was the girl he was going to marry,” Mrs. Lennon said. “When I heard that, I thought he was crazy. But he knew. He knew.”