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Bad Day’s Night

2 minute read
J.F.O. Mcallister/London

He lives a quiet private life, on a country estate outside London surrounded by razor wire, packed with burglar alarms, patrolled by dogs. But last week an intruder managed to break into George Harrison’s bedroom in the middle of the night and stab him. Harrison’s wife Olivia ended the assault by hitting the attacker on the head with a bedside lamp, knocking him unconscious. The ex-Beatle escaped with a one-inch knife wound in the chest. He was treated for a punctured lung, but doctors pronounced him lucky: “There is no such thing as a safe stab wound to the chest,” said surgeon William Fountain.

The alleged attacker was Michael Abram, 33, from the Liverpool suburb of Huyton. Nicknamed “Mad Mike” by neighborhood children, Abram was occasionally seen listening to a Walkman and serenading no one in particular from the balcony of his apartment. His mother told the Liverpool Echo that he had recently become obsessed with the Beatles but “hates them and even believes they are witches.” He wore a Walkman, she said, “to stop voices in his head.”

Harrison, 56, who beat back throat cancer 18 months ago, was planning to host a giant millennium bash at his estate. Instead he spent New Year’s Eve in the hospital with his wife. He also got a little help from former band mates Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, who issued statements of support. Said McCartney: “Thank God that both George and Olivia are all right.”

–By J.F.O. McAllister/London

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