'Like when John Lennon died': Apple co-founder on Jobs

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct 5, 2011 (AFP) - Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak told CNN that he was "dumbfounded" by news of the death Wednesday of his former partner Steve Jobs, and compared it to the death of former Beatle John Lennon.

"I'm a little bit, like, awestruck, just dumbfounded, and I can't put my mind into gear, I can't do things," said Wozniak, 61, who founded Apple with Jobs in 1976.

"It's kind of like when John Lennon died, or JFK .. I don't think anyone else, maybe Martin Luther King," he said.

AFP - A tag is painted outside Apple's flagship store in New York to remember Apple's founder Steve Jobs, on New York's 5th Avenue, October 5, 2011.

Lennon was shot dead by a deranged fan in 1980, president John F. Kennedy was shot dead in 1963, and rights leader King was murdered in 1968.

"It's sort of ... like there's a big hole left in you, it's very hard to go back and reflect and touch on all those feelings, what it means," a distressed Wozniak said.

"Everyone knows what he did, how much life he brought to the world ... he certainly far, far overachieved any goals that he had."

The early Apple years when Wozniak and Jobs collaborated was "such an important time," Wozniak said.

"Here is a guy that created tools that everyone in the world -- billions of people -- just love, and feel happy and good about."

Wozniak survived a 1981 plane crash, but as he recovered he chose to work as a mere engineer at the company. He eventually left Apple in 1987.

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