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There Was No Bullet Wound in John F. Kennedy's Throat

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Helpful and confusing at the same time.

Remember the pathologists did not have Kennedy's clothes to examine. A small oversight. Does anybody recall who had possession of the clothes at this time? FBI? Secret Service?

I believe Finck had asked to see the clothes.

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Thanks, Bernice. When one considers that, within seconds of his being shot, Kennedy was laying on his left side, the bloodstains appear to be consistent with the official story. Amazingly, it seems possible Burkley never told Humes about the throat wound because he didn't know about it himself. He was, after all focusing his attention on Jackie and LBJ. He was then rushed onto a plane to Washington. So it's possible he never discussed the wounds with Perry or Clark, or heard about the press conference. If I'm forgetting some detail I trust Ashton will let us all know.

The main thing I find questionable about Burkley has to do with the Harper fragment. The FBI showed it to him a few days after the assassination. He KNEW Humes hadn't yet performed the supplementary autopsy on the brain. The Harper fragment shows internal and external beveling, and suggests the wound near the temple was a tangential wound of both entrance and exit. This would make the small entrance by the EOP a separate hit. I believe this is why Burkley said the brain might show proof of more than one bullet track. Which makes it hard to understand why he failed to tell Humes about the Harper fragment, and why he failed to personally supervise the sectioning of Kennedy's brain. I suspect LBJ or someone told Burkley that they didn't want to know, and that Burkley played along thinking someday the truth would come out. When he found out who was on the HSCA panel, and that the HSCA was gonna stand by the single-bullet theory, he figured it for another whitewash, and decided to withdraw his offer of telling all he knew. We might still find out what it was he wanted to tell them. His daughter refused to cooperate with the ARRB, but perhaps she'll find the files herself and someday write a book.

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Pat, Sprague did not exactly jump on Burkley's offer to talk.

I know Blakey is kind of a "bugaboo" and there certainly were witnesses the HSCA did not call but I understand that Baden complained that Blakey was pressuring him to FIND evidence of a conspiracy and Baden objected to the "pressure". This seems inconsistent with Blakey not having someone interview Burkley. Is it possible that Blakey was not even aware of the letter from Blakey's attorney?

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Manchester writes (p.267) "The throat wound--which was then assumed to be an entry wound, because there was no time to turn him over--was small, and it exuded blood but slowly."

So, in order to narrow down the time at which the throat wound was sustained (assuming Ashton is right about the piercing needle/dart), then it is necessary to determine whether the shirt collar and tie were bloodstained (stains on other parts of JFK's shirt notwithstanding).

Manchester—who was not there—notwithstanding, you nonetheless raise an incisively (pardon the pun) apposite issue by mentioning that the throat wound has been described as exuding blood.

It may be of interest to you to learn that Malcolm O. Perry—not Manchester—is the sole source of that description of the throat wound. In the sequence in which Perry's relevant comments were made (my bold emphasis added):

Perry's deposition by Specter at Parkland:

There was a small wound in the lower anterior third in the midline of the neck,
from which blood was exuding very slowly
. ...The wound was roughly spherical to oval in shape, not a punched-out wound, actually, nor was it particularly ragged. It was rather clean cut, but
the blood obscured any detail about the edges of the wound

What was the condition of the edges of the wound, if you can recollect?

I couldn't state with certainty, due to the fact that they were covered by blood, and I did not make a minute examination. I determined only the fact that there was a wound there, roughly 5 mm. in size or so.

From Perry's testimony before the Warren Commission:

In the lower part of the neck below the Adams apple was a small, roughly circular wound of perhaps 5 mm. in diameter
from which blood was exuding slowly
. ...This was situated in the lower anterior one-third of the neck, approximately 5 mm. in diameter.
It was exuding blood slowly which partially obscured it
. Its edges were neither ragged nor were they punched out, but rather clean. ...As I originally described it, the edges were neither cleancut—that is punched out—nor were they very ragged. I realize that is not a very specific description but it is in between those two areas....
It was exuding blood
during that procedure and thus I did not examine it very closely.

From Perry's testimony with Jeremy Gunn of the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB):

The neck wound—very few people saw that. I didn't even wipe the blood off on the right side, so I estimated it at five millimeters or so of exuding blood and I cut right through it, as Dr. Jones knows, so nobody else saw it after that. It was small. ...It—as I said the wound was exuding blood slowly, but Dr. Baxter mentioned about ineffective attempts to bag him because of the position of the wound in the trach. And when I opened the neck, there was an injury to the trachea on the right lateral side. There was air and blood in that area of the mediastinum. That's when I asked that a chest tube be put in place...

For what it's worth, no other medical personnel in the record described this throat wound as "exuding blood," but please pay close attention to the last sentence by Perry above, going to the sequence in which the throat wound was opened and Perry subsequently asked that a chest tube be put in place, because that sequence is quite important to the subject of this thread, which I will get to in a moment, but first let me address the following that you said:

In the absence of bloodstains on the relevant parts of the collar and tie, it could be reasonably assumed that the throat wound was sustained after JFK's clothes had been removed-- "it exuded blood but slowly". Looking again at the photo of JFK which Ashton provided in post #100 and in particular its location vis-a-vis the collar and tie (despite the fact that it shows the wound after Dr. Perry's incisions), it seems most likely to me that blood from the wound would have stained those items of clothing.

First, let me say that from my study of the available images of the clothing, the amount of blood around the front shirt collar area, and particularly its contiguity with blood all over other areas of the shirt, renders that visual evidence ineffectual for determining how much might have been from the throat wound.

It also is unlikely that the tie would have been subjected to much, if any, blood staining from such a wound, however it was inflicted, because four layers of shirt placket material would have been between the flesh and the tie during any and all periods that the tie was in place, and the tie knot normally rides in a small arc away from the body at the location of the wound.

Having said all that, let me address your implied question about the likelihood of any such hand-inflicted piercing wound having been sustained before or after the shirt and tie were removed. I believe it could have been either, and here is why:

As I already mentioned, a man's tie knot ordinarily rides in a small arc away from the body at the location of the wound. Additionally, because of the way a man's shirt buttons, the placket opening is on his right-hand side.

Recall that the wound was slightly to the right of the midline of the throat. This means that such a piercing device could have been slipped under the knot of the tie and into the right-side opening between the shirt plackets before the shirt and tie were removed, or during the process of such removal. In fact this very act could be construed to account, in such a scenario, for the wound having been slightly right of the midline of the throat.

This is why I said that I believe the wound could have been inflicted anywhere from the time JFK was removed from the limo—with his suit coat having been put over his head to roll him into Parkland—until the time that Perry and Dr. Ronald Coy Jones arrived (they arrived together).

Now I'd like to return to the sequence I mentioned before concerning when Perry made the throat incision, and when he asked for chest tubes to be put into place. I turn now to the testimony of Commander James J. Humes, who performed the autopsy. I beg your indulgence for the length of the excerpts below, but I feel that the testimony is exactly relevant to the question of when such a piercing wound reasonably might have been made—particularly in contrast to the testimony above about the throat wound exuding small amounts of blood:

Testimony of Commander James J. Humes before the Warren Commission:

In speaking of that wound in the neck [the throat wound], Doctor Perry told me that before he enlarged it to make the tracheotomy wound it was a "few millimeters in diameter." Of course by the time we saw it, as my associates and as you have heard, it was considerably larger and no longer at all obvious as a missile wound.

The report states, and Doctor Perry told me in telephone conversation, that
there was bubbling of air and blood in the vicinity of this wound when he made the tracheotomy.
This caused him to believe that perhaps there had been a violation of one of the—one or other of the pleural cavities by a missile. He, therefore, asked one of his associates—and the record is to me somewhat confused as to which of his associates—he asked one of his associates to put in a chest tube.

This is a maneuver which is—was—quite logical under the circumstances, and which would, if a tube that were placed through all layers of the wall of the chest, and the chest cavity had been violated one could remove air that had gotten in there and greatly assist respiration.

So when we examined the President, in addition to the large wound which we found in conversation with Doctor Perry was the tracheotomy wound,
there were two smaller wounds on the upper anterior chest. ...[T]hese were knife wounds, these were incised wounds
on either side of the chest... .

We examined those wounds very carefully, and found that
they, however, did not enter the chest cavity. They only went through the skin.
I presume that as they were performing that procedure it was obvious that the President had died, and they didn't pursue this.

...When examining the wounds in the base of the President's neck anteriorly [the throat wound], the region of the tracheotomy performed at Parkland Hospital, we noted and we noted in our record,
some contusion and bruising of the muscles of the neck
of the President.

...Now, we also made note of the types of wounds which I mentioned to you before in this testimony on the chest which were going to be used by the doctors there to place chest tubes. They also made other wounds. one on the left arm, and a wound on the ankle of the President with the idea of administering intravenous blood and other fluids in hope of replacing the blood which the President had lost from his extensive wounds.

Those wounds showed no evidence of bruising or contusion or physical violence
, which made us reach the conclusion that
they were performed during the agonal moments of the late president, and when the circulation was, in essence, very seriously embarrassed, if not nonfunctional.

Deposition of Commander James J. Humes before the Assassination Records Review Board (ARRB):

[T]here was
a gaping defect that was obviously a tracheotomy incision in the anterior neck
, and there were a couple of small--you never heard much about this, either. A couple of small incised wounds on the chest, and I forget—I wrote down, wherever I wrote it down, that it looked to me like
somebody was going to think of putting in a chest tube. But they never did, because all they did was go through the skin.
They obviously— I imagine they decided the President was deceased before they were going to pursue it. But somebody started, apparently, to insert chest tubes, which would not be an unreasonable thing to do. They were, you know, maybe two centimeters long, something like that, and between the ribs, low in the anterior chest.

I want to leave alone for the moment the extraordinary conflict about whether or not chest tubes ever actually were inserted. I will develop this further, but the salient point for the time being is that when Perry saw the throat wound and began to make the incision in the throat, Kennedy's circulatory system still had some function (the exuding of blood from the throat wound), as apparently also was the case with the respiratory system (consensus on agonal breathing, Perry testimony of bubbling of blood around the trachea). Yet just moments, perhaps seconds, later, when the incisions for the chest tubes were made (only through the skin), the circulatory system was "very seriously embarrassed, if not nonfunctional."

This supports the possibility that a hand-inflicted throat wound made shortly before Perry's arrival and incision very well could have introduced a powerful and fast-acting toxin.


Edited by Ashton Gray
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Are you familiar with George Michael Evica's in-depth investigation of the chest tube issue and the nature of the alleged cut-downs on JFK's torso?

He delivered at least one paper on this subject at a JFK Lancer November in Dallas faire. It speaks indirectly yet sympathetically to the coup d'grace hypothesis.

I'm sure that the Mary Ferrell site has a copy of the published version on line. Well worth your review.


Edited by Charles Drago
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Given that the premise of this thread includes, of necessity, the possibility that medical personnel at Parkland hospital may have been witting conspirators in the assassination, and even that one of them might have inflicted the throat wound at Parkland Hospital as a coup de grace to ensure the death of the President and therefore the success of the assassination, I felt it appropriate at this time to post here briefly a list of doctors who worked on both Kennedy and Oswald at Parkland. I am listing them here in the order in which they arrived in Trauma Room One when Kennedy was being treated:

Dr. Marion Thomas Jenkins (anesthesiologist)

Dr. Malcolm O. Perry

Dr. Charles Rufus Baxter

Dr. Gene Coleman Akin

This list is inclusive, not exclusive.

I place it here because if there were, in fact, witting conspirators among the medical personnel at Parkland to guarantee the death of the President, it stands to reason that just such a guarantee would be needed also for the death of the patsy.

I will mention that in addition to Marion Thomas Jenkins having arrived in Trauma Room One before Perry during the treatment of Kennedy, Jenkins is the sole source of the blatant falsehood of a bullet wound to Kennedy's left temple. Jenkins told Dr. McClelland in Trauma Room One, falsely, that there was such a wound, and McClelland then wrote that into his report later that afternoon without ever having seen such a wound. McClelland later recanted what he had written in that report and admitted that he never had seen any such wound. Jenkins later testified that he only thought there was such a wound. I've covered this with the relevant testimony in a separate thread.

I don't raise this point here to invite dicussion of head wounds in this thread, and I will not respond to discussion of head wounds in this thread. If the reason I raise it here isn't apparent to anyone, I also won't explain to them why I consider it entirely germane to this thread, because they wouldn't get it even if I did.


Edited by Ashton Gray
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Which begs the question of personnel overlap in the JFK and LHO treatment procedures -- including, in the latter's case, first responders within reach of the target during its transit from police HQ to Parkland.

The fact that LHO received intense physical manipulation en route -- an ostensibly resuscitative effort that resulted in the exacerbation of internal bleeding -- is widely known.


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Jenkins is the sole source of the blatant falsehood of a bullet wound to Kennedy's left temple.

Silly claim:

Left temple entry:

1) Elm St eyewitness:

Norman Similas: “I could see a hole in the President's left temple...,” Jack Bell, “10 Feet from the President,” NYT, 23 November 1963, p.5, citing Toronto Star.

2) Parkland medical staff:

a) Dr. Robert McClelland: "The cause of death was due to a massive head and brain injury from a gunshot wound of the left temple," Commission Exhibit 392. [‘Admission Note,’ written 22 Nov 1963 at 4.45 pm, reproduced in WCR572, & 17WCH11-12: cited in Lifton’s Best Evidence, p.55; and Meagher’s Accessories After the Fact, pp.159-160.]

B)Dr. Marion Jenkins: "I don't know whether this is right or not, but I thought there was a wound on the left temporal area, right in the hairline and right above the zygomatic process," 6WH48. [Cited by Sylvia Meagher, Accessories After The Fact: The Warren Commission, The Authorities, & The Report (New York: Vintage Books, 1992 reprint), p. 40.]

c) Dr. Robert Shaw: "The third bullet struck the President on the left side of the head in the region of the left temporal region and made a large wound of exit on the right side of the head," Letter from Dr. Shaw to Larry Ross, "Did Two Gunmen Cut Down Kennedy?", Today (British magazine), 15 February 1964, p.4.

d) Dr. David Stewart: “This was the finding of all the physicians who were in attendance. There was a small wound in the left front of the President’s head and there was a quite massive wound of exit at the right back side of the head, and it was felt by all the physicians at the time to be a wound of entry which went in the front,” The Joe Dolan (Radio) Show, KNEW (Oakland, California), at 08:15hrs on 10 April 1967. (Cited by Harold Weisberg. Selections from Whitewash (NY: Carroll & Graf/Richard Gallen, 1994), pp.331-2.)

3) Parkland non-medical staff:

Father Oscar Huber: “terrible wound” over Kennedy's left eye [AP despatch, Philadelphia Sunday Bulletin, 24 November 1963]

4) Bethesda: Drs. Humes & Boswell:

“The autopsy documents also provide some cryptic indications of damage to the left side of the head. The notorious face-sheet on which Dr. J. Thornton Boswell committed his unfortunate 'diagram error' consists of front and back outlines of a male figure. On the front figure, the autopsy surgeons entered the tracheotomy incision (6.5 cm), the four cut-downs made in the Parkland emergency room for administration of infusions (2 cms. Each), and a small circle at the right eye, with the marginal notation '0.8 cm,' apparently representing damage produced by the two bullet fragments that lodged there. Dr. Humes testified that the fragments measured 7 by 2 mm and 3 by 1 mm respectively (2H354). Although he said nothing about the damage at the left eye, the diagram shows a small dot at that site, labeled '0.4 cm' (CE 397, Vol XVII, p.45). Neither Arlen Specter, who conducted the questioning of the autopsy surgeons, nor the Commission members and lawyers present asked any questions about this indication on the diagram of damage at the left eye.

Turning back to the male outline of the figure – the one Dr. Boswell did not realize would become a public document even though it had to be assumed at the time of the autopsy that findings would become evidence at the trial of the accused assassin – we find a small circle at the back of the head about equidistant from the ears and level with the top of the ears. Apparently this represents the small entrance wound which the autopsy surgeons and the Warren Commission say entered the back of the head and exploded out through the right side, carrying large large segments of the skull. But an arrow at the wound on the diagram points to the front and left and not to the front and right.

A forensic pathologist who was asked to interpret this feature said that it signified that a missile had entered the back of the head traveling to the left and front. As if in confirmation, an autopsy diagram of the skull (CE 397, Vol XVII, p.46) shows a large rectangle marked '3 cm' at the site of the left eye, with a ragged lateral margin, seemingly to indicate fracture or missing bone.

The autopsy surgeons were not questioned about any of the three diagram indications of bullet damage at the left eye or left temple. Nevertheless, when Dr. Jenkins testified that he thought there was a wound in the left temporal area, Arlen Specter replied, 'The autopsy report disclosed no such developments,'” Sylvia Meagher. Accessories After the Fact: The Warren Commission, The Authorities & The Report (NY, Vintage Books, 1992 reprint), pp.161-2.

5) JFK shot in the face/front of the head/forehead:

a) Alan Smith: “The car was ten feet from me when a bullet hit the President in the forehead…the car went about five feet and stopped,” Jack Bell, “Eyewitnesses describe scene of assassination: Sounds of shooting brought car to a halt,” NYT, 23 November 1963, p.5.

B)James Chaney: “When the second shot came, I looked back in time to see the President struck in the face,” Anthony Summers’ The Kennedy Conspiracy (London: Sphere, 1992), p.23, citing, on p.543, an “unidentified film interview in police station and taped interview for KLIF, Dallas, on record ‘The Fateful Hours,’ Capitol Records.” See also: 22 November 1963, WFAA-TV, video packet, & Houston Chronicle, 24 November 1963.

c) Dr. Perry: “When asked to specify the nature of the wound, Dr. Perry said that the entrance wound was in the front of the head,” Post-Dispatch News Services, “Priest Who Gave Last Rites ‘Didn’t See Any Sign of Life,’” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 24 November 1963, p.23A; also Associated Press despatch, shortly after 2 pm, quoted by WOR Radio, New York, at 2:43 pm, CST (Fred Newcomb & Perry Adams. Murder from Within, p.154, n.58): ‘Dr. Perry said the entrance wound—which is the medical description—the entrance wound was in the front of the head’”

I don't raise this point here to invite dicussion of head wounds in this thread, and I will not respond to discussion of head wounds in this thread.

Very wise.


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Jenkins is the sole source of the blatant falsehood of a bullet wound to Kennedy's left temple.

Silly claim

I cannot express my contempt for your jejune attempt to hijack this thread, particularly after I've already decimated the bulk of the idiocy you've now spewed here by appropriately replying in the thread you started to peddle your favorite myth—in an educational forum—as though it were "fact." <SPIT!>

I gently tried to bring you to your senses on this issue in that thread, where it was on-topic and appropriate, and I won't stoop to your miserable, pathetic, unprincipled hijacking tactics, but know this: I'll soon be returning to that thread you started, and this time I'm going to finish the job.

Gird your loins, boy. I just took the gloves off.

Ashton Gray

P.S. If there's a moderator with integrity, I request that you appropriately move Rigby's grossly off-topic spew out of this thread and into his thread, where it belongs. Of course I won't be holding my breath.

Edited by Ashton Gray
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This is the only thread in which he is mentioned

No, it is not. The same data is in Rigby's thread, which you can get to by clicking here, where there is a prayer meeting of the Front Shot Faithful going full-bore in all its hand-clapping glory on the subject of head wounds, and where Rigby knows very well he should have left it. This thread is not about head wounds at all.

so this IS the appropriate thread.

No, it is not the appropriate thread.


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I am not aware of any forum rule which assigns ownership of

any topic to any particular member. I am under the impression

that any member may respond to any research mentioned in

any thread. This thread contained some NEW information which

I had never heard of. This thread is where I appropriately asked

for more information. I do not wish to start a new thread just to

ask a question. If I am mistaken, I am sure a "moderator" will

straighten me out.


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Here are some photos for you....

Hi, Bernice. Always nice to see you, and I appreciate your contributing your excellent collection of photos to this topic.

I've always had a bit of curiosity about the knotted tie and tie-on-hanger photos. Do you know their origins?

The knotted tie image has held its own fascination for me, and played at least some part in the deductions that led to this very thread you've posted in.

I realize that you're probably a bit put out with me, and that you have a certain investment of your own efforts in the Front Shot scenarios, but I've always valued your contributions, so I'd very much like to get your thoughts about some reasoning of mine concerning that knotted tie image.

It seems to me obvious that the single defect in only one surface of the tie where the knot is tells an impartial observer several things:

  1. It is entirely inconsistent with a bullet or any other projectile going through the knot in either direction—in or out—because any such projectile would have to have penetrated all layers through all turns of the knot—which would be at least 15 layers of fabric. Would you agree?
  2. It is entirely inconsistent with such a defect having been made by a knife or scissors being used to remove the tie, because it is the most unlikely place to attempt to cut through a tie to remove it. Would you agree?

However, I find such an odd defect in just that top layer of fabric entirely consistent with this: an attempt to put a piercing device through the knot, then, realizing it will be impossible to get it all the way through 15 layers of fabric, slipping the device under the tie and either between the plackets or through the shirt into the throat.

Would you consider that to be a possible explanation both for the visual physical evidence of the tie, and for the wound in the throat?

Also Dr.Burkley arrived five minutes after the President ..in his own words

That's not entirely accurate. Actually, here are Burkley's own words:

I was there probably within three to five minutes of the time the President arrived. I went immediately in to see the President, and went to the table on which he was being treated... .

Of course it's important to keep in mind that after the President's limousine arrived at Parkland, there was at least some small amount of time before the stretchers and personnel arrived at the car, then there were the efforts required to get Connally out of the limo first and onto a stretcher, then Kennedy was taken out after Connally, then Kennedy was rolled the distance to the entrance, then down the hallway and into Trauma Room One. Then there was a good deal of initial confusion with Mrs. Kennedy and the SS agents in the room while efforts were being made to get them to leave the room and get Mrs. Kennedy seated outside Trauma Room One.

So "within three to five minutes of the time the President arrived" puts Burkley in Trauma Room One very early on in the medical proceedings that took place inside the trauma room.

I don't really know the precise agenda of those who try to make it seem that Burkley was late for the party unless they are trying to make it seem that he was ignorant of the throat wound and tracheostomy, but a close study of the record proves beyond any reasonable doubt that he wasn't late at all, that he knew about the throat wound, and that he was present when Perry arrived and the tracheostomy subsequently was done.

and no he never mentions a frontal or neck wound

Yes, that's correct: Burkley supervised the autopsy, and throughout the entire procedure kept Humes and the other autopsy personnel completely in the dark about the throat wound and about the tracheostomy that had obliterated it. Even though Humes assumed that he what he saw on the throat was the result of a tracheostomy, he had to call Perry at Parkland the next morning even to confirm that there had been a tracheostomy, and only then—after it was too late to do anything further about it—learned from Perry that there had been a wound in the throat.

Why do you think Burkley withheld the information about the throat wound from the autopsy personnel?

...It had to disappear....from what I have read...it had to be a particle from the rear, not a frontal shot...that would have meant a conspiracy...

Ah. And what would it mean if the throat wound had been inflicted at Parkland Hospital by hand?


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