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Steve Thomas

49th Armored Division

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Posted (edited)

The two main divisions in the Texas National Guard were the 90th Infantry Division and the 49th Armored Division.

The 90th Infantry had a long and storied career in WWII, taking part in many of the major campaigns.

Colonel L. Robert Castorr:

Would be linked to a gun running scheme to Cuba with Nancy Perrin Rich and Jack Ruby.

The Mexia Daily News from Mexia, Texas · Page 1

November 7, 1957

https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/11876796/

(L. Robert Castorr) “Mr. Castorr. who is now a- colonel in the Active Reserve serving as inspector and advisor to the 90th Division in Texas...”

 

I don't know who the Inspector/Advisor to the 49th Division was, but the 49th was one of the premier National Guard units in the country. They are called Armored Divisions, but as such, they also handle land-based nuclear missiles. If my memory serves me right, they were the first unit in the country to be given "Honest Johns".

http://www.texasmilitaryforcesmuseum.org/49ad/49division.htm

An Introduction to the history of the 49th (Lone Star) Armored Division (1947 -1963)

Brian Schenk

Soon after being designated as a "combat-ready" unit in 1955, the 49th was assigned as one of the six National Guard divisions making up the Ready Reserve Strategic Army Force, a first-priority reserve component. The designation gave the division higher priority for newer equipment and advanced training. “

“Command Post Exercises (CPX) called "Cloverleaf" became a part of the command staff's training beginning in 1957. Conducted by Headquarters, 4th U. S. Army, the Cloverleaf exercises were based at Fort Sam Houston, in San Antonio, Texas.”

 

Brandy, Our Man in Acapulco: The Life and Times of Colonel Frank M. Brandstetter. A Biography by Rodney P. Carlisle and Dominic J. Monetta. University of North Texas Press, 1999.

https://books.google.com/books?id=QLdqgDsVio4C&pg=PA122&source=gbs_toc_r&cad=3#v=onepage&q&f=false

p. 121. “While at the Presidio, Brandy had prepared a draft of a Domestic Emergency Plan, which he revised and submitted in 1954 as part of the Cloverleaf I exercise, to G-2 of the Fourth Army Command in Dallas, Colonel M.H. Truly.”

 

Posted by Tosh Plumlee in the Education Forum 11/12/2004

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/1972-felipe-vidal-santiago/?page=4

"MOS: WR Plumlee 1795, 3795 Tank Crew man Tk Comander, Sherman Tank. Cpl. Plumlee Mos 'Unknown; Unknown" Ft Bliss Texas; Texas National Guard; Unknown. OO Records at Office of Adjutant General State of Texas Camp Mabry, Texas. Texas National Guard; Texas Fourth Army Reserve; Certified Copy of Available Document By; XXX referenced doc."

Posted by Rosh Plumlee in the Education Forum 11/12/2004

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/1972-felipe-vidal-santiago/?page=4

Larry: Note In 1952 Captain Seiwell went back into service with the Forth Army Reserve and was based at Dallas Love Field.. The same place as the Texas 49th Armord Div.

I too was in the Texas National Guard 49th Armord Div before I went into the regular Army in 1953 at Ft Bliss Texas... I also went back into the National Guard and then transfered into the 4th Army Reserve in 1954.

Dial Ryder, who did gun work for Lee Harvey Oswald, served in the 49th Division in “Armored tank training”.

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/russ/testimony/ryder.htm

Mr. LIEBELER. Have you been in the military service?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER. What branch were you in?
Mr. RYDER. Went in the National Guard. 49th Armored Division which I am still an active member.
Mr. LIEBELER. Of the National Guard?
Mr. RYDER. Yes.

Mr. LIEBELER. What kind of training did you receive?
Mr. RYDER. Armored tank training.

Mr. LIEBELER. You served as a tanker at Fort Polk?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER. What is your rank in the National Guard?
Mr. RYDER. Now?
Mr. LIEBELER. Yes.
Mr. RYDER. Sergeant.
Mr. LIEBELER. What was it at the time you went into active duty?
Mr. RYDER. It was June 11 in 1960 when I reported to Fort Leonard Wood.
Mr. LIEBELER. June what? What was your rank when you went on active duty?
Mr. RYDER. I was just an E-2.

 

What do you think the chances are that Tosh Plumlee and Dial Ryder knew each other?

 

Steve Thomas

Edited by Steve Thomas

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4 hours ago, Steve Thomas said:

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/russ/testimony/ryder.htm

Mr. LIEBELER. Have you been in the military service?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER. What branch were you in?
Mr. RYDER. Went in the National Guard. 49th Armored Division which I am still an active member.
Mr. LIEBELER. Of the National Guard?
Mr. RYDER. Yes.

Mr. LIEBELER. What kind of training did you receive?
Mr. RYDER. Armored tank training.

Mr. LIEBELER. You served as a tanker at Fort Polk?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/49th_Armored_Division

In September 1961, an executive order alerted the division for mobilization at Dallas due to the 1961 Berlin Crisis.[1] On October 15, 1961, the division entered federal service, and it subsequently deployed to Fort Polk, LA. The division was to stay there ten months. In May 1962, the division staged the large-scale Exercise Iron Dragoon, still remembered among National Guard armor exercises. Also while at Fort Polk the division's missile unit became the first Army National Guard unit to fire the Honest John nuclear-tipped surface-to-surface missile. The 49th Armored Division reverted to Texas State control in August 1962.”

 

Steve Thomas

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Posted (edited)
On 3/4/2019 at 5:41 AM, Steve Thomas said:

The two main divisions in the Texas National Guard were the 90th Infantry Division and the 49th Armored Division.

The 90th Infantry had a long and storied career in WWII, taking part in many of the major campaigns.

Colonel L. Robert Castorr:

Would be linked to a gun running scheme to Cuba with Nancy Perrin Rich and Jack Ruby.

The Mexia Daily News from Mexia, Texas · Page 1

November 7, 1957

https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/11876796/

(L. Robert Castorr) “Mr. Castorr. who is now a- colonel in the Active Reserve serving as inspector and advisor to the 90th Division in Texas...”

 

I don't know who the Inspector/Advisor to the 49th Division was, but the 49th was one of the premier National Guard units in the country. They are called Armored Divisions, but as such, they also handle land-based nuclear missiles. If my memory serves me right, they were the first unit in the country to be given "Honest Johns".

http://www.texasmilitaryforcesmuseum.org/49ad/49division.htm

An Introduction to the history of the 49th (Lone Star) Armored Division (1947 -1963)

Brian Schenk

Soon after being designated as a "combat-ready" unit in 1955, the 49th was assigned as one of the six National Guard divisions making up the Ready Reserve Strategic Army Force, a first-priority reserve component. The designation gave the division higher priority for newer equipment and advanced training. “

“Command Post Exercises (CPX) called "Cloverleaf" became a part of the command staff's training beginning in 1957. Conducted by Headquarters, 4th U. S. Army, the Cloverleaf exercises were based at Fort Sam Houston, in San Antonio, Texas.”

 

Brandy, Our Man in Acapulco: The Life and Times of Colonel Frank M. Brandstetter. A Biography by Rodney P. Carlisle and Dominic J. Monetta. University of North Texas Press, 1999.

https://books.google.com/books?id=QLdqgDsVio4C&pg=PA122&source=gbs_toc_r&cad=3#v=onepage&q&f=false

p. 121. “While at the Presidio, Brandy had prepared a draft of a Domestic Emergency Plan, which he revised and submitted in 1954 as part of the Cloverleaf I exercise, to G-2 of the Fourth Army Command in Dallas, Colonel M.H. Truly.”

 

Posted by Tosh Plumlee in the Education Forum 11/12/2004

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/1972-felipe-vidal-santiago/?page=4

"MOS: WR Plumlee 1795, 3795 Tank Crew man Tk Comander, Sherman Tank. Cpl. Plumlee Mos 'Unknown; Unknown" Ft Bliss Texas; Texas National Guard; Unknown. OO Records at Office of Adjutant General State of Texas Camp Mabry, Texas. Texas National Guard; Texas Fourth Army Reserve; Certified Copy of Available Document By; XXX referenced doc."

Posted by Rosh Plumlee in the Education Forum 11/12/2004

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/1972-felipe-vidal-santiago/?page=4

Larry: Note In 1952 Captain Seiwell went back into service with the Forth Army Reserve and was based at Dallas Love Field.. The same place as the Texas 49th Armord Div.

I too was in the Texas National Guard 49th Armord Div before I went into the regular Army in 1953 at Ft Bliss Texas... I also went back into the National Guard and then transfered into the 4th Army Reserve in 1954.

Dial Ryder, who did gun work for Lee Harvey Oswald, served in the 49th Division in “Armored tank training”.

http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/russ/testimony/ryder.htm

Mr. LIEBELER. Have you been in the military service?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER. What branch were you in?
Mr. RYDER. Went in the National Guard. 49th Armored Division which I am still an active member.
Mr. LIEBELER. Of the National Guard?
Mr. RYDER. Yes.

Mr. LIEBELER. What kind of training did you receive?
Mr. RYDER. Armored tank training.

Mr. LIEBELER. You served as a tanker at Fort Polk?
Mr. RYDER. Yes, sir.
Mr. LIEBELER. What is your rank in the National Guard?
Mr. RYDER. Now?
Mr. LIEBELER. Yes.
Mr. RYDER. Sergeant.
Mr. LIEBELER. What was it at the time you went into active duty?
Mr. RYDER. It was June 11 in 1960 when I reported to Fort Leonard Wood.
Mr. LIEBELER. June what? What was your rank when you went on active duty?
Mr. RYDER. I was just an E-2.

 

What do you think the chances are that Tosh Plumlee and Dial Ryder knew each other?

 

Steve Thomas

Steve,

As you may know, the late Harold Weinberg noted that Lucille Connell, friend and confidante of Sylvia Odio, testified that Col. L. Robert Castorr was trying to stir up ant-Kennedy feelings amongst the Dallas Cuban refugee community. 

Her statements dovetail nicely with Fathe Walter McCann’s statement that within that same community in Dallas was a “political Cuban”,  more interested in generating anti-JFK feelings then in helping recent Cuban refugees.

This unnamed, uninvestigated Cuban worked as an orderly at Parkland Hospital, and Weinberg suspected that he may have planted the stretcher bullet.

Weisberg may well have been right, but for our purposes, the main thing is that Col. Castorr was closely involved in creating anti-Kennedy sentiment amount the Dallas Cubans in the fall of 1963.

And that was something about which the Warren Commission desperately wanted to remain ignorant.

Edited by Paul Jolliffe

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1 hour ago, Paul Jolliffe said:

Weisberg may well have been right, but for our purposes, the main thing is that Col. Castorr was closely involved in creating anti-Kennedy sentiment amount the Dallas Cubans in the fall of 1963.

 

Paul,

 

The Mexia Daily News from Mexia, Texas · Page 1

November 7, 1957

https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/11876796/


 

Mexia Man Receives Appointment Earl McKeilh, (center) is pictured with L. Robert Castorr, of Dallas, Southwestern division manager of the National Federation of Independent Business, and Si N. Meadow, district manager of the organization from Austin.

 

Earl McKeith was coming out of a local bank Tuesday and came face to face with a man who was one of his fellow Army officers in the early thirties. Earl didn't recognize him but L. Robert Castorr, of Dallas, immediately grabbed Earl's arm and said "I know you." Mr. Castorr. who is now a- colonel in the Active Reserve serving as inspector and advisor to the 90th Division in Texas., and Mr. McKeith, a Reserve. Army captain, were first lieutenants when they served with each other in the Second Infantry Division. They last saw each other in 1930. Col. Castorr served with Merrill's Marauders in Burma during World War II.” “Mr. Meadow was accompanied to Mexia by L. Robert Castorr, the Southwestern division manager for the National Federation of Independent Business. Mr. Castorr formerly served in the U. S. Army with Mr. McKeilh.”

 

From David Boylan in the Education Forum May 18, 2006

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/6807-john-singlaub-and-the-chinese-connection/?page=2

And the Burma connection. I had some info (but lost it ) that Nestor Sanchez was also in Burma. Here's some notes on two others that were in Burma:

Harold Weisberg’s Grand Jury testimony on the History matters website. – Col Castorr. Harold describes Castorr as “political agent who is keeping the Cuban people stirred up.” And “Father McChann tells the Secret Service that Col. Castorr’s actions are consistent with that of an intelligence agent.” Castorr was L. Robert Castorr of Dallas, Texas and Arlington, Virginia (and Maryland)

Harold also noted that “Col. Castorr who was a friend of General Walker told a mutual friend that he was involved in a sideline of running guns to Cuba – a profitable sideline – and this is all part of the Odio story.””

 

Remember the Colonel who was present during Nancy Perrin Rich's testimony to the WC?

I think it was Castorr.

 

Steve Thomas

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On 3/16/2019 at 2:04 PM, Steve Thomas said:

Paul,

 

The Mexia Daily News from Mexia, Texas · Page 1

November 7, 1957

https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/11876796/


 

Mexia Man Receives Appointment Earl McKeilh, (center) is pictured with L. Robert Castorr, of Dallas, Southwestern division manager of the National Federation of Independent Business, and Si N. Meadow, district manager of the organization from Austin.

 

Earl McKeith was coming out of a local bank Tuesday and came face to face with a man who was one of his fellow Army officers in the early thirties. Earl didn't recognize him but L. Robert Castorr, of Dallas, immediately grabbed Earl's arm and said "I know you." Mr. Castorr. who is now a- colonel in the Active Reserve serving as inspector and advisor to the 90th Division in Texas., and Mr. McKeith, a Reserve. Army captain, were first lieutenants when they served with each other in the Second Infantry Division. They last saw each other in 1930. Col. Castorr served with Merrill's Marauders in Burma during World War II.” “Mr. Meadow was accompanied to Mexia by L. Robert Castorr, the Southwestern division manager for the National Federation of Independent Business. Mr. Castorr formerly served in the U. S. Army with Mr. McKeilh.”

 

From David Boylan in the Education Forum May 18, 2006

http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic/6807-john-singlaub-and-the-chinese-connection/?page=2

And the Burma connection. I had some info (but lost it ) that Nestor Sanchez was also in Burma. Here's some notes on two others that were in Burma:

Harold Weisberg’s Grand Jury testimony on the History matters website. – Col Castorr. Harold describes Castorr as “political agent who is keeping the Cuban people stirred up.” And “Father McChann tells the Secret Service that Col. Castorr’s actions are consistent with that of an intelligence agent.” Castorr was L. Robert Castorr of Dallas, Texas and Arlington, Virginia (and Maryland)

Harold also noted that “Col. Castorr who was a friend of General Walker told a mutual friend that he was involved in a sideline of running guns to Cuba – a profitable sideline – and this is all part of the Odio story.””

 

Remember the Colonel who was present during Nancy Perrin Rich's testimony to the WC?

I think it was Castorr.

 

Steve Thomas

Steve,

I agree it was almost certainly Castorr at the three meetings in Dallas with Nancy Perrin Rich, her husband, Jack Ruby, Dave Cherry, a”pugnacious-looking” prize-fighter guy, a Latin or two, and a middle-aged, steel gray haired, mannish woman (“a real old granite face”). Plus maybe “Tony” Genovese, son of mafia godfather Vito Genovese.

Castorr was in charge and did much of the talking.

NPR described the colonel as middle aged, 45 or 50, slightly built and balding. That seems to fit with the image of Castorr from the picture in the paper you attached.

These 1962 meetings are all plausible and have the right cast of characters, but obviously 11/22/63 was not on the agenda in 1962. However, it is reminiscent of the September Labor Day 1963 approach to Robert McKeown in Dallas when three men, including either LHO or his lookalike, asked McKeown to deliver four rifles for $10,000. That’s the same figure cited by the colonel in NPR’s testimony, and I doubt it’s a coincidence, do you?

McKeown, like NPR, ultimately refused the deal because it was fishy - that was way too much money for a seemingly simple job.

That in the fall of 1963 Castorr was linked with a “political Cuban” seeking to arouse anti-Kennedy passions in the Dallas Cuban refugee community was so suspicious and screamed for investigation. Father McChann specifically said so in regards to what happened with Sylvia Odio.

I think the summer 1962 Castorr-led meetings with NPR and company were a blueprint for the fall of 1963, don’t you?

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TEXAS STATE GUARD

by William C. Wilkes and Mary M. Standifer

https://tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/qqt01

In the 1950s the Signal Corps of the TSGRC embraced 500 radio stations statewide. These provided valuable communications assistance to civil authorities and the Red Cross in times of natural disaster.

In 1961, during the Berlin Wall crisis, the Forty-ninth Armored Division and other nondivisional units of the Texas National Guard were called into federal service for a year, leaving seventy-one National Guard armories vacant. The oversight of these armories was consigned to 148 officers and 365 enlisted men in the TSGRC, who were called to active duty and formed into seventy-one Texas State Guard Security Units. The guardsmen served in this capacity until August 10, 1962, when they resumed their TSGRC status. In 1965 the Texas legislature abolished the TSGRC and reestablished the Texas State Guard, with Maj. Gen. John L. Thompson, Jr., as commanding general.
 

Facebook posting by an unknown author.

https://www.facebook.com/TexasStateGuard/posts/1576889535692221

“How about a little bit of HISTORY of the Texas State Guard?

With the advent of the Cold War, The Texas State Guard Reserve Corps (TSGRC) was given additional duties — those specific to statewide radio communications and civil defense. By 1951, the TSGRC had 50 fixed radio stations and over 100 automobiles throughout the state – almost all were funded at the personal expense of the operators and heavily used during many natural disasters. With the federalization of the Texas National Guard during the Berlin Crisis in 1961, 71 Texas National Guard Armories were left vacant and a great amount of state property unprotected. To address this, elements of the TSGRC were organized as Texas State Guard Security Units. These units were assigned to the 49th Armored Division and the 11014th Transportation Company, manning their respective armories until these units were returned to their state mission one year later.”

So, was it 50 stations, or 500 stations?


Statement by Colonel John W. Mayo, Chairman of City-County Civil Defense and Disaster Commission at the Dedication of the Emergency Operations Center at Fair Park.

http://www.civildefensemuseum.com/fallout/docs/may241961a.jpg

 

This Statement appeared on the Civil Defense and Disaster Commission letter head co-signed by Boise Smith, WRR transmitter Building at Fair Park.

WRR was a city-owned radio station.

In the Batchelor's Exhibit CE5002 https://www.history-matters.com/archive/jfk/wc/wcvols/wh19/pdf/WH19_Batchelor_Ex_5002.pdf

Boise Smith is listed as a Deputy Chief of Police (along with Lumpkin, Stevenson and Batchelor) and as the Director of the Civil Defense and Disaster Commission. As such, he reported directly to Curry.


Boise Smith was also linked the 4150th ARSU Army Reserve Training School in Dallas.

See this statement by Mayo decrying the artists being displayed at the Art Museum

http://washingtonbabylon.com/bunker-command-center-jfk-assassination-merely-worlds-interesting-basement/

"In March of 1955, Col. John W. Mayo, commander of the Dallas Metropolitan Post No. 581 of the American Legion, sent a communication to the Trustees of the Art Museum decrying many of the Museum’s policies and saying that the Post objected ‘to the Museum patronizing and supporting artists … whose political beliefs are dedicated to destroying our way of life."

In this same website, it says, " An online exhibit by the Dallas City Hall provides the following historical summary of WRR, the station-of-choice for Dallas-Fort Worth highbrows since 1964, when it switched to an all classical format. Until the departments had their own internal support, WRR supplied and maintained all radio equipment for Police, Fire, Park and Recreation, Water, Public Works, and the former Health Department. At its peak it furnished dispatching services for Dallas County, Cockrell Hill Police Department, and private ambulance services (in the days before 911). WRR discontinued these adjunct services in 1969."

 

Steve Thomas

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