WEEKEND LIFE: The Lost Daughter of Yoko Ono; I THOUGHT ABOUT MY DAUGHTER EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE

By Croce, Maria | Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), April 1, 2000 | Go to article overview

WEEKEND LIFE: The Lost Daughter of Yoko Ono; I THOUGHT ABOUT MY DAUGHTER EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE


Croce, Maria, Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)


WHEN Yoko Ono dines out in restaurants or visits art exhibitions, no-one takes notice of the young woman who has recently appeared by her side.

Few realise the dark-haired Kyoko is the daughter Yoko hadn't seen for almost 30 years.

Kyoko, 36, disappeared from her mother's life when she was taken into hiding by her father, film-maker Tony Cox, at the age of eight. But now Yoko has been secretly reunited with her long-lost daughter and Kyoko has moved into her mother's neo-gothic apartment at the Dakota building in New York. The luxury flat is the home Yoko shared with John Lennon, who was murdered in 1980.

Kyoko phoned her mum out of the blue in 1998 and the pair had a tearful reunion.

Yoko told a friend: "Everything is good again now Kyoko is back. It was such a long time, but when I heard her voice, I knew it was her."

A few months ago, Kyoko called again and asked if she could move in with her mother. Yoko was thrilled and said yes straight away.

But the amazing reunion could have a dramatic effect on the division of John Lennon's multi-million pound estate ruled over by Yoko.

Lennon's first wife Cynthia and their son Julian have both reportedly complained about being short-changed in recent years and friends say Kyoko's reappearance may further complicate any inheritance claims.

Kyoko has met half-brother Sean, 24, for the first time and friends say they're on very good terms. She hasn't seen her step-brother Julian, 36, since 1969, the year she was pictured with him - in small tartan outfits - in Scotland.

Kyoko's father Tony Cox met Yoko in 1961, when he said she was recovering from a nervous breakdown and he consoled her over the break-up of her first marriage.

He had been intrigued by some of her art work and tracked her down to Tokyo. They married and Kyoko was born in 1963.

They worked together as conceptual artists, which included climbing together into a black bag in front of an audience. The couple moved to London in the Sixties and Yoko met John Lennon at one of her art shows in 1966 at the height of his fame.

Yoko and Tony made the controversial Film Number Four in 1967, which focused exclusively on 365 bottoms.

But their marriage had hit rock bottom and, while her husband was in France, Yoko began an affair with John. She divorced Tony and married John in 1969.

At first Tony and Yoko remained on friendly terms, but their relationship soured when they argued over getting to see Kyoko. In 1971, Tony and his second wife, museum curator Melinda Kendall, were living in Majorca, studying mysticism with Indian guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

Tony accused Yoko of abducting their daughter from his hotel after she and John took her out for three hours. He said he was worried Yoko would one day try to keep their daughter, so he disappeared with young Kyoko. He initially fled to Houston, his second wife's home town, where they both became evangelical Christians.

Towards the end of 1971, a Houston judge ordered Tony to let Yoko visit her daughter, but he took off again.

Yoko and John frantically tried to track her down, hiring private detectives and contacting police forces across the country, but all to no avail.

Tony later said: "I was not getting a fair shake at all." He felt he would lose his daughter to the Lennons' power and money.

He sought refuge with a friend in Los Angeles, who was a member of the Church of the Living Word, also known as "the Walk". Tony and Kyoko joined up and, for the next five years, lived with members of the sect in rural Iowa and California.

He divorced Melinda and, in 1977, he decided to leave. Kyoko was going to school in North Hollywood under the assumed name of Ruth Holman. Tony claims cult founder John Robert Stevens suspected he wanted to leave the Walk, so had Kyoko escorted to and from school. …

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