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William Kelly

Oswald Leaving TSBD?

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And Sean, are you really in Dublin? Do you ever have a pint with John Geraghty?

BK

AT the price of a pint in Dublin today

everyone is a

teetotaler.

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Have you any idea how ludicrously implausible that sounds?

What is really "ludicrously implausible," Sean

is the idea that he shot JFK, a man he admired,

according to his wife and everyone who knew

him well.

P.S. If you can show me evidence that he was a fan of Lyndon Johnson

then I might believe you.

Ray, if you think my argument is that Lee Oswald shot JFK then I'm not the one who needs sleep!

Best to you (and Bill) from a wretchedly wet Dublin....

(Bill--no, I've never had a pint with JG. Then again, I'm not much of a pint man--Double Jemmy is more my poison;)

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And Sean, are you really in Dublin? Do you ever have a pint with John Geraghty?

BK

AT the price of a pint in Dublin today

everyone is a

teetotaler.

I've been a teetotaler for more than a year now. That would explain why I can't see the pistol in officer Baker's hand or "College Boy" high up on the TSBD steps for that matter.

Perhaps I should drink a bottle of Jameson. That should do the trick.

LOL

--Thomas "Tommy" Mahon (biological) :sun

Edited by Thomas Graves

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We appear to have the following state of play as of the late afternoon/early evening of the assassination:

-Lee Oswald in custody claiming to have been at the front entrance on the first floor during the assassination and to have had a fleeting encounter with a police officer and Mr. Truly as they rushed into the building

-Detective Ed Hicks telling the press about an incident involving Oswald and a cop at the front entrance of the building shortly after the shooting

-Marrion L. Baker on the record as having encountered a man walking away from the rear stairway several floors up the building.

So far, not a single reference anywhere--in a single news media report--to a second-floor lunchroom incident.

**

But it gets even worse for the second-floor lunchroom story.

For we now need to add into the mix two startling newspaper reports written on the evening of the assassination.

Both refer to an Oswald sighting on--you've guessed it--the first floor.

**

#1: From the Dallas Morning News, written by Kent Biffle 11/22, published 11/23:

StorageRoomBifflemarked.jpg

The dissonant element here (dissonant, that is, to my theory) is not "first floor", not "the officer, gun drawn", not the question as to Oswald's being an employee. No, the dissonant element is "storage room". How--on my theory--would the Baker-Oswald encounter have happened in a first-floor storage room? Isn't it supposed to have taken place in the front lobby?

There were in fact two designated "storage rooms" on the TSBD first floor--one beside the domino room near the rear of the building and one just off the front lobby. Obviously the latter is going to arouse our interest in the current context. But the close proximity of the "storage room" to the lobby area doesn't quite explain how it could have become confused in the reporter's mind with "front lobby/vestibule".

In order to grapple with this conundrum, we must move on to the other newspaper report.

**

#2: From the New York Herald Tribune, written 11/22, published 11/23:

Mr. [Ochus V.] Campbell [vice-president of the TSBD] said, "Shortly after the shooting we raced back into the building. We had been outside watching the parade. We saw him (Oswald) in a small storage room on the ground floor. Then we noticed he was gone.” Mr Campbell added: "Of course he and the others were on their lunch hour but he did not have permission to leave the building and we haven't seen him since."

There it is again: storage room.

Only this time with three differences:

a ) This is a "small storage room"

b ) We are being given a direct quote from Ochus Campbell, the man we've just seen feature so prominently in the Biffle report

c ) The talk is of "we" having simply seen Oswald--no mention of an officer being involved.

What in the Sam Hill is going on here?

**

How about we do the unthinkable and take at face value what the NY Herald Tribune is telling us, i.e. that Ochus Campbell recalled his and at least one other person's having seen Oswald in a small storage room on the first floor?

Campbell had been outside watching the motorcade with two other people: Roy Truly and Jeraldean Reid.

We know that Truly separated from them immediately after the shots and ran into the building after Marrion Baker.

So that leaves Campbell + Jeraldean Reid.

Put the case:

Oswald/Prayer Man, at some point after the shooting, nipped in to the small storage room just off the front lobby.

Ochus Campbell reentered the building around this time accompanied by at least one other person--Jeraldean Reid.

They made their way to the front-of-house stairs in order to go up to the second floor office area.

In order to do so they had to pass the small storage room beside the stairway.

Storageroommarked.jpg

The door was open and they--or one of them--noticed and recognised Lee Oswald in there.

Thinking nothing of it, they proceeded on up to the second floor office area.

**

I'll let Geneva Hine tell us what happened next:

Mr. BALL. When you came back in did you see Mrs. Reid?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I don't believe there was a soul in the office when I came back in right then.

Mr. BALL. Did you see anybody else go in through there?

Miss HINE. No, sir; after I answered the telephone then there was about four or five people that came in.

...

Mr. BALL. Do you have any definite recollection of Mrs. Reid coming in?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I only saw four or five people that came by and they all came and were all talking about how terrible it was.

Mr. BALL. Do you remember their names?

Miss HINE. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Who were they?

Miss HINE. Mr. Williams, Mr. Molina (spelling), Miss Martha Reid, Mrs. Reid, Mrs. Sarah Stanton, and Mr. Campbell; that's all I recall, sir.

Mrs. Reid... and Mr. Campbell.

Now let's re-read that direct quote from Ochus Campbell in the NY Herald Tribune:

Shortly after the shooting we [= I and the person with me] raced back into the building. We [=I and the person with me] had been outside watching the parade. We [i and the person with me] saw him (Oswald) in a small storage room on the ground floor.

**

Mrs. Reid would accompany Roy Truly to DPD HQ the following day and give a statement to the effect that she had seen Oswald--not loitering in a first-floor storage room--but entering the second-floor office area.

Was she pressurised by her two bosses--Ochus and Roy--to do so? I believe we have serious grounds for believing that the poor lady was.

Now if only that pesky Geneva Hine hadn't been upstairs the whole time to ruin the marvelously efficient box-ticking story foisted upon her colleague.

Edited by Sean Murphy

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We appear to have the following state of play as of the late afternoon/early evening of the assassination:

-Lee Oswald in custody claiming to have been at the front entrance on the first floor during the assassination and to have had a fleeting encounter with a police officer and Mr. Truly as they rushed into the building

-Detective Ed Hicks telling the press about an incident involving Oswald and a cop at the front entrance of the building shortly after the shooting

-Marrion L. Baker on the record as having encountered a man walking away from the rear stairway several floors up the building.

So far, not a single reference anywhere--in a single news media report--to a second-floor lunchroom incident.

**

But it gets even worse for the second-floor lunchroom story.

For we now need to add into the mix two startling newspaper reports written on the evening of the assassination.

Both refer to an Oswald sighting on--you've guessed it--the first floor.

**

#1: From the Dallas Morning News, written by Kent Biffle 11/22, published 11/23:

StorageRoomBifflemarked.jpg

The dissonant element here (dissonant, that is, to my theory) is not "first floor", not "the officer, gun drawn", not the question as to Oswald's being an employee. No, the dissonant element is "storage room". How--on my theory--would the Baker-Oswald encounter have happened in a first-floor storage room? Isn't it supposed to have taken place in the front lobby?

There were in fact two designated "storage rooms" on the TSBD first floor--one beside the domino room near the rear of the building and one just off the front lobby. Obviously the latter is going to arouse our interest in the current context. But the close proximity of the "storage room" to the lobby area doesn't quite explain how it could have become confused in the reporter's mind with "front lobby/vestibule".

In order to grapple with this conundrum, we must move on to the other newspaper report.

**

#2: From the New York Herald Tribune, written 11/22, published 11/23:

Mr. [Ochus V.] Campbell [vice-president of the TSBD] said, "Shortly after the shooting we raced back into the building. We had been outside watching the parade. We saw him (Oswald) in a small storage room on the ground floor. Then we noticed he was gone.” Mr Campbell added: "Of course he and the others were on their lunch hour but he did not have permission to leave the building and we haven't seen him since."

There it is again: storage room.

Only this time with three differences:

a ) This is a "small storage room"

b ) We are being given a direct quote from Ochus Campbell, the man we've just seen feature so prominently in the Biffle report

c ) The talk is of "we" having simply seen Oswald--no mention of an officer being involved.

What in the Sam Hill is going on here?

**

How about we do the unthinkable and take at face value what the NY Herald Tribune is telling us, i.e. that Ochus Campbell recalled his and at least other person's having seen Oswald in a small storage room on the first floor?

Campbell had been outside watching the motorcade with two other people: Roy Truly and Jeraldean Reid.

We know that Truly separated from them immediately after the shots and ran into the building after Marrion Baker.

So that leaves Campbell + Jeraldean Reid.

Put the case:

Oswald/Prayer Man, at some point after the shooting, nipped in to the small storage room just off the front lobby.

Ochus Campbell reentered the building around this time accompanied by at least one other person--Jeraldean Reid.

They made their way to the front-of-house stairs in order to go up to the second floor office area.

In order to do so they had to pass the small storage room beside the stairway.

Storageroommarked.jpg

The door was open and they--or one of them--noticed and recognised Lee Oswald in there.

Thinking nothing of it, they proceeded on up to the second floor office area.

**

I'll let Geneva Hine tell us what happened next:

Mr. BALL. When you came back in did you see Mrs. Reid?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I don't believe there was a soul in the office when I came back in right then.

Mr. BALL. Did you see anybody else go in through there?

Miss HINE. No, sir; after I answered the telephone then there was about four or five people that came in.

...

Mr. BALL. Do you have any definite recollection of Mrs. Reid coming in?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I only saw four or five people that came by and they all came and were all talking about how terrible it was.

Mr. BALL. Do you remember their names?

Miss HINE. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Who were they?

Miss HINE. Mr. Williams, Mr. Molina (spelling), Miss Martha Reid, Mrs. Reid, Mrs. Sarah Stanton, and Mr. Campbell; that's all I recall, sir.

Mrs. Reid... and Mr. Campbell.

Now let's re-read that direct quote from Ochus Campbell in the NY Herald Tribune:

Shortly after the shooting we [= I and the person with me] raced back into the building. We [=I and the person with me] had been outside watching the parade. We [i and the person with me] saw him (Oswald) in a small storage room on the ground floor.

**

Mrs. Reid would accompany Roy Truly to DPD HQ the following day and give a statement to the effect that she had seen Oswald--not loitering in a first-floor storage room--but entering the second-floor office area.

Was she pressurised by her two bosses--Ochus and Roy--to do so? I believe we have serious grounds for believing that the poor lady was.

Now if only that pesky Geneva Hine hadn't been upstairs the whole time to ruin the marvelously efficient box-ticking story foisted upon her colleague.

I'm a bit confused here, Sean, with Mr. Campbell's stories. Did he "race" back into the building following the shots or did he "run" towards the grassy knoll?

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Now if only that pesky Geneva Hine hadn't been upstairs the whole time to ruin the marvelously efficient box-ticking story foisted upon her colleague.

Now Geneva Hine, for those uninitiated in the TSBD employee picnic, was a secretary who, because she had seen JFK before, volunteered to stay behind and man the telephones while all the other secretaries and employees went out front to the street or to the upper floor windows to view the motorcade.

She knew Oswald from having given him change for sodas and telephone calls, and may have done so on the day of the assassination, and according to one Dallas researcher who talked with her, was exchanging change with Oswald when the shots were fired, although she didn't testify to that.

She is however, a key witness and one of things she did testify to was the fact that the telephone lines went dead around the time of the assassination.

BK

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I'll let Geneva Hine tell us what happened next:

Mr. BALL. When you came back in did you see Mrs. Reid?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I don't believe there was a soul in the office when I came back in right then.

Mr. BALL. Did you see anybody else go in through there?

Miss HINE. No, sir; after I answered the telephone then there was about four or five people that came in.

...

Mr. BALL. Do you have any definite recollection of Mrs. Reid coming in?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I only saw four or five people that came by and they all came and were all talking about how terrible it was.

Mr. BALL. Do you remember their names?

Miss HINE. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Who were they?

Miss HINE. Mr. Williams, Mr. Molina (spelling), Miss Martha Reid, Mrs. Reid, Mrs. Sarah Stanton, and Mr. Campbell; that's all I recall, sir.

THis statement appears to be self-contradicting.

She didn't see Mrs. Reid come in, she only saw four or five people

one of whom was MRs. Reid.

I don't see much mileage in that.

And I would not put much faith in press reports where it is not clear which floor they are talking about.

Edited by J. Raymond Carroll

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Robert, Baker and Oswald weren't racing to meet in the Second Floor lunchroom, it was pretty incredible that Baker just managed to catch a fleeting glimpse of the blur of a head moving in the two square foot window of the lunchroom door - stopped and walked over and opened the door and with gun drawn stopped the man - who Truly identifies as Oswald and clears him.

From Baker, Truly and Oswald we know this event takes place and can time it about a minute and a half after the last shot - a moment in time - Oswald's sideways mug in the window of the second floor lunchroom door - approximately 12:31:30, give or take a few seconds.

If you stop it there and back everything up - Baker goes back down the stairs - and Oswald goes back into the offices where he is a few moments later - encountered by Mrs. Reid, who says it took her exactly two minutes - 120 seconds - timed three times with David Belin, to get there after the last shot. One can certainly imagine, backing up Oswald to the Baker-Truly encounter -then setting him in motion - he then casually proceeds to buy his coke, open it, dispose of the cap and thirty seconds after meeting Baker/Truiy, he coolly and calmly (her words) walks into the offices where Mrs. Reid arrives at her desk.

That Baker said in his first report that the encounter with Oswald happened on the fourth floor and that Mrs. Reid recalls Oswald in white t-shirt - are reflective of mistakes all witnesses make - especially after hearing others talk and media accounts - and they don't alter the other facts that most of what they said has been confirmed by others, including Oswald.

Thank you Bill for setting the record straight.

The key witness here is Lee Oswald himself

who told Fritz he was on the 2nd floor getting a coke when the policeman came in.

I think you should be focusing on why Fritz hid his notes, Sean.

Otherwise you have done an outstanding job on this thread and are my nominee

for this years Nobel.

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I'll let Geneva Hine tell us what happened next:

Mr. BALL. When you came back in did you see Mrs. Reid?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I don't believe there was a soul in the office when I came back in right then.

Mr. BALL. Did you see anybody else go in through there?

Miss HINE. No, sir; after I answered the telephone then there was about four or five people that came in.

...

Mr. BALL. Do you have any definite recollection of Mrs. Reid coming in?

Miss HINE. No, sir; I only saw four or five people that came by and they all came and were all talking about how terrible it was.

Mr. BALL. Do you remember their names?

Miss HINE. Yes, sir.

Mr. BALL. Who were they?

Miss HINE. Mr. Williams, Mr. Molina (spelling), Miss Martha Reid, Mrs. Reid, Mrs. Sarah Stanton, and Mr. Campbell; that's all I recall, sir.

THis statement appears to be self-contradicting.

She didn't see Mrs. Reid come in, she only saw four or five people

one of whom was MRs. Reid.

I don't see much mileage in that.

And I would not put much faith in press reports where it is not clear which floor they are talking about.

If you read her testimony WC6H393 - jfkassassination.net/russ/testimonh/hine.htm

she says some interesting things - she notes that the phones and lights went dead just before the motorcade arrived, and that is often taken as meaning the phones and lights in the entire building went off - but actually she is talking about the three phone lines into the offices - went quiet. That gave her a chance to see the motorcade through a window on the east side of the building overlooking Houston Street, where she saw the lead car, the president and the next car, when she heard the shots, which she said clearly came from inside the building.

She then went to the offices on the south side of the building, but they were all locked, and they wouldn't let her in even though she could see someone in their through the glass door window. This person, she said, was on the phone and didn't respond to her knock on the door. Why would a secretary lock herself in her office and talk on the phone while the motorcade was passing by the window?

It was probably while Hine was in this hall way when Reid came into her office when no one was there, and by the time she did get back to her desk Reid was already there and Oswald had left.

Of Oswald, who she didn't see on the second floor - he was "Stoic" and an odd duck," who never responded to her questions when she gave him change, almost every day.

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Ray, we don't know that Oswald "said he was in the 2nd floor lunchroom when the policeman came in" because we weren't there and the interrogations were not recorded.

But Fritz was there and,

as Oz reminds us,

Fritz took notes.

Fritz hid his notes

and lied about them

as we now know.

His notes say Oz claimed to be

on the second floor

when the policeman came in.

Embrace it, Sean.

Learn to live with it.

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A few observations:

Mrs. Reid, Roy Truly, Campbell, Officer Marion Baker, and Possibly Prayer Man/Oswald all are in close proximity within seconds of each other at the front entrance area. Approximately 1 minute later (give or take a few seconds) they are all once again in close proximity to each other in the immediate vicinity of the 2nd floor lunch room, although they took different routes to reach that destination. You could also add Otis Williams to that group since he was on the steps near Prayer Man, and also turns up in the group Geneva Hines describes. A large group apparently in a hurry to get to the same destination.

As Ray pointed out, early researchers Leo Sauvage, Weisberg, and Sylvia Meagher used the 2nd floor lunch room encounter to vindicate LHO from being the 6th floor shooter. One wonders how these researchers would have reacted to the physical evidence of Prayer Man if it had been available to them.

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From the Dallas Morning News 23/11/63:

"Campbell said he ran toward a grassy knoll west of the building where he thought the sniper had hidden. He said Truly and an officer ran into the building."

Once again, did O.V. Campbell, and presumably Mrs. Reid, "race" back into the building or "run" toward the grassy knoll? As I said before, awfully tight timing, I should think.

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One wonders how these researchers would have reacted to the physical evidence of Prayer Man if it had been available to them.

I had the great good fortune to meet Larry Ray Harris

a few months before his untimely death.

Larry's research took him to jobs at the TSBD

and as a mailman in Oak Cliff where his route included

Tenth Street and Patton Avenue.

Larry spent an afternoon and evening giving me

the most amazing tour and his only reward was

burgers and beers

at J. D. Tippit's old hangout,

Austin's Barbecue.

Richard's post reminded me of Larry Ray

and I also knew Harold Weisberg.

I never knew Leo Sauvage or Sylvia Meagher

but can safely say, from reading their work

that neither Larry Ray nor Weisberg nor Meagher nor Sauvage

would have been a bit surprised by the discovery of

Prayer Man

Which reminds me: Larry Ray worked alongside Jack Daugherty

and tried to get Daugherty to talk about the case

but Daugherty was too cunning and refused to answer questions.

I regret now that I did not record my conversations with Larry Ray

although I may have some on video,

but as I recall Larry Ray said Daugherty would just give him a knowing look

and point to his head, as if to indicate

"don't remember".

I wasn't paying much attention to Jack Daugherty at the time

and, unlike others I never considered him a suspect

because we know from Milteer that the assassination was

"A mastermind job with a lot of money involved"

and I figured that, if Jack was involved he could probably afford

to retire.

Edited by J. Raymond Carroll

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Now if only that pesky Geneva Hine hadn't been upstairs the whole time to ruin the marvelously efficient box-ticking story foisted upon her colleague.

Now Geneva Hine, for those uninitiated in the TSBD employee picnic, was a secretary who, because she had seen JFK before, volunteered to stay behind and man the telephones while all the other secretaries and employees went out front to the street or to the upper floor windows to view the motorcade.

She knew Oswald from having given him change for sodas and telephone calls, and may have done so on the day of the assassination, and according to one Dallas researcher who talked with her, was exchanging change with Oswald when the shots were fired, although she didn't testify to that.

One can only await the details of Robert Groden's interview with the late Geneva Hine with keen impatience. She died (IIRC) a decade ago at the fine age of 100. It's deeply regrettable that Groden has held back the full story until the 50th anniversary.

CT efforts to exonerate Oswald via the second-floor lunchroom story have had a fatal flaw at their heart: they have Oswald, on the first floor at the time of the shooting, responding to the shots and/or ensuing mayhem by going upstairs to buy a coke. This may account for Baker's first glimpse of Oswald off the second-floor landing, but only at the cost of casting Oswald as a sociopathically dissociated man.

We see this problem with extra bells on in the current thread, where it is being seriously proposed that Oswald/Prayer Man's reaction to the firing of shots while JFK, the man he so deeply admires, is passing the building is: 'Well, ain't that a thing. Time for that coke I promised to treat myself to.' Quite preposterous.

**

In my opinion there are only five scenarios in any sort of serious contention at this point:

1. The Geneva Hine/Groden Scenario: Oswald was on the second floor getting change for the coke machine when he and Hine heard loud bangs; not realising what they were, Oswald went ahead and bought the coke. Second-floor lunchroom story true? Yes.

2. The Prayer-Man-to-Second-Floor Scenario: Oswald is Prayer Man; after Baker and Truly rush off across the shipping floor for the rear stairs, Oswald for some reason decides to follow them by ascending the front stairs and making his way at speed to the northwest corner of the second floor; the purchase of a coke is the very furthest thing from his mind. Second-floor lunchroom story true? Yes.

3. David Lifton's Baker-Taking-Out-Oswald Scenario: Oswald is instructed by his handler(s) to wait in the second-floor lunchroom during the motorcade; Baker is tasked with running into the building and taking Oswald out there; only the unanticipated presence of Roy Truly stays Baker's hand. Second-floor lunchroom incident true? Yes.

4. The Prayer-Man Scenario, as proposed in the current thread: Oswald is Prayer Man; after Baker and Truly rush off across the shipping floor for the rear stairs, he sticks around in the first-floor front lobby area. Second-floor lunchroom story true? No.

5. The Non-Prayer-Man Scenario: Oswald is not Prayer Man; he is however near the front entrance of the building at the time of the shooting. Second-floor lunchroom story true? No.

My money is on #4, with #5 and #1 a not too distant second place.

Edited by Sean Murphy

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I'm a bit confused here, Sean, with Mr. Campbell's stories. Did he "race" back into the building following the shots or did he "run" towards the grassy knoll?

It may easily be both, Robert.

The key word in Biffle's DMN report is "toward": Campbell is said to have run toward the grassy knoll but not necessarily very far in that direction. We see lots of people do exactly that in the Couch film.

He may then have returned to where Jeraldean Reid was standing and together they may have hurried back into the building, spotting Oswald in the small storage room just off the first-floor front lobby.

From Campbell's 11/24 FBI interview:

He then observed the car bearing President KENNEDY to slow down, a near stop, and a motorcycle policeman rushed up. Immediately following this, he observed the car rush away from the scene. He then immediately rushed into his building without having seen anything unusual from any window of this building.

If I'm right about his and Jeraldean Reid's having spotted Oswald in the storage room, then Biffle's DMN report can be explained as a simple case of crossed wires. He picked up two reports--Oswald's having been spoken to by a revolver-toting police officer immediately after the assassination and Oswald's having been seen in a small storage room immediately after the assassination--and conflated them. The direct quote from Campbell in the NY Herald Tribune report allows us to separate out the two reports.

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