By Sara Nathan
Moments before he died of a rare form of cancer at a clinic in Switzerland, the man who created the Sex Pistols turned to his family and said: ‘Free Leonard Peltier.’
Although an obscure cause to some, Peltier is known to supporters as a charismatic leader of the American Indians and has been at the centre of a global campaign for his freedom. The 65-year-old remains in prison in Pennsylvania with no chance of release until 2024.
McLaren’s former partner, the designer Dame Vivienne Westwood, has been a vocal member of the campaign and has produced T-shirts appealing for his freedom.
Speaking for the first time since McLaren’s death on Thursday, his son Joe Corre revealed the final message could have been inspired by a T-shirt worn to the hospital by the music manager’s stepson, Ben.
Joe said: ‘His last words were “Free Leonard Peltier.” Ben had a T-shirt with the slogan on and my father saw this and admired it.
For more on the subject, see Art Show About FBI and Indians and Peltier: Obama's Political Prisoner.
Below: Malcolm McLaren and Young Kim.