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Mrs Helen Forrest


Tim Gratz
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Has anyone heard of the claim of Mrs. James (Helen) Forrest that shortly before the shooting she saw a man with a rifle on the second floor of the TSBD (which could be a possible trajectory); and that she saw a man resembling Lee Harvey Oswald enter the Rambler station wagon after running down the incline. Mrs. Forrest is quoted as saying: "If it wasn't Oswald, it was his identical twin." (I did not know Oswald had a twin brother.) I believe she first came forward with this information in 1974. [Eleven years after the fact, to be sure, but better late than never!]

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Has anyone heard of the claim of Mrs. James (Helen) Forrest that shortly before the shooting she saw a man with a rifle on the second floor of the TSBD (which could be a possible trajectory); and that she saw a man resembling Lee Harvey Oswald enter the Rambler station wagon after running down the incline. Mrs. Forrest is quoted as saying: "If it wasn't Oswald, it was his identical twin." (I did not know Oswald had a twin brother.) I believe she first came forward with this information in 1974. [Eleven years after the fact, to be sure, but better late than never!]

Tim,

If memory serves me, the incident was mentioned by authors Richard Bartholomew (his article on the Rambler) and Michael Kurtz in his book 'Crime of the Century'.

James

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James, I read about her in Kurtz's book. I will have to recheck the Bartholomew article. Thank you for the reference.

Kurtz says he interviewed her on May 17, 1974.

Any information re why she did not testify to the HSCA (or did she?).

Although VB claims to have read "The Crime of the Century" he does not get around to mentioning her, even in his Endnotes.

Does anybody know anything about her background, why she wasin DP, why she did not surface until 1974, etc?

Of course her information about seeing Oswald (or at least an Oswald "twin") enter the Rambler station wagon and flee is of great importance and IMO by itself establishes a conspiracy, even if it was an Oswald "look-alike" fleeing the scene.

But question: is she a credible witness? If she is, and if she is still around, it seems to me her story is of such importance that it should be memorialized in a sworn statement that is videotaped.

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2 cents:

The fact that she did not immediately report seeing a man with a rifle on the 2nd floor of the TSBD on 11/22/63 shortly before the shooting, is highly suspect. Who would keep something of this nature to themselves, considering the circumstances?

There was of course at least one further report of Oswald (or a look-a-like) stepping into a station wagon (Roger Craig).

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Yes, no doubt there was someone in the same area that looked a lot like Lee Oswald. No doubt there was someone who tried to impersonate Oswald or at the least ensure that he would be remembered by a few witnesses.

Off hand I do recall examples, such as the hitchhiker who obtained a ride from Oak Cliff to the TSBD with a rifle a day or so prior ! Also a fellow who bought beer near the TSBD before noon and was carded, the clerk thought the ID showed the fellow was born in 1938 and that the last name on the ID was Oswald. Couldn't have been Lee in either case as he was working at the TSBD during the morning and didn't drink. Also the night before Lee was in Irving at the Paine's.

I suspect the rifle range impersonations of "Oswald" etc. were all by the same impersonator as the other incidents described above.

Edited by Antti Hynonen
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Has anyone heard of the claim of Mrs. James (Helen) Forrest that shortly before the shooting she saw a man with a rifle on the second floor of the TSBD (which could be a possible trajectory); and that she saw a man resembling Lee Harvey Oswald enter the Rambler station wagon after running down the incline. Mrs. Forrest is quoted as saying: "If it wasn't Oswald, it was his identical twin." (I did not know Oswald had a twin brother.) I believe she first came forward with this information in 1974. [Eleven years after the fact, to be sure, but better late than never!]

Tim, if she was referring to seeing someone point a rifle out a window on the 2nd floor, she isn't credible. The lower floors were air-conditioned. As a consequence, they were screwed down.

If she was in the building and saw someone with a rifle somewhere on the 2nd floor, then that a whole other ball game.

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Greg, one cannot tell from Kurtz's book. Unless she was a TSBD employee, it must have been a reported claim from OUTSIDE.

Could she have seen a man with a rifle by looking through a window?

A great catch. In "The Crime of the Century" Kurtz even suggests a shot from the second floor of the TSBD (but does not imply Mrs. Forrest saw any shooting). But could she have seen a man with a rifle THROUGH a window? Kurtz does not say (or even imply--it is just unclear) that she saw the rifle outside the window.

When you say the lower floors were air conditioned, do you mean first and second only?

One other thing, in one paragraph in his book Kurtz refers to Forrest's TESTIMONY including her with witnesses who did in fact testify. Unless one goes to the back of the book one would not know that her statements come from an INTERVIEW with Kurtz--not "testimony" by any commonly accepted understanding of the word.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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Greg, one cannot tell from Kurtz's book. Unless she was a TSBD employee, it must have been a reported claim from OUTSIDE.

Could she have seen a man with a rifle by looking through a window?

A great catch. In "The Crime of the Century" Kurtz even suggests a shot from the second floor of the TSBD (but does not imply Mrs. Forrest saw any shooting). But could she have seen a man with a rifle THROUGH a window? Kurtz does not say (or even imply--it is just unclear) that she saw the rifle outside the window.

When you say the lower floors were air conditioned, do you mean first and second only?

One other thing, in one paragraph in his book Kurtz refers to Forrest's TESTIMONY including her with witnesses who did in fact testify. Unless one goes to the back of the book one would not know that her statements come from an INTERVIEW with Kurtz--not "testimony" by any commonly accepted understanding of the word.

Tim,

no-one by that name was employed in the building.

There is a reference somewhere to the lower floors being air-conditioned. Can't put my hand on it right now.

However, this is from the statement of Steven F Wilson in CE 1381. He watched the motorcade from a 2nd floor window:

"...I sat next to the window on the Elm St side, in front of my secretary's desk. I raised the venetian blinds. The window was not open, as it was secured with screws because of the air conditioning in the building...

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Excellent work on both counts, Greg.

Your knowledge of the facts is outstanding. Kurtz should have caught that.

Do you by chance have reference to what Mr. Batholomew wrote about her? Was he relying on Kurtz?

Tim,

He only mentions her in regard to the Rambler.

This is his citation. The paragraph it refers to also mentions Craig, Robinson and Carr. My guess is that Kurtz is the sole source of info on Forrest. But I have yet to guess the lotto numbers correctly, so if it's important to you, you need to check all the sources listed.

1. House Select Committee on Assassinations, Vol. XII, pp. 8-9, 18, (hereafter as 12 HSCA 8-9, 18) cited in Dennis Ford, "A Conspiracy Model and a Conspirator: Predictions and Possible Refutations," The Third Decade, (Vol. 9, No. 1, Nov. 1992), p. 25; Michael L. Kurtz, Crime of The Century, (Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Press, 1982),p. 132; Josiah Thompson, Six Seconds in Dallas, (NY: Bernard Geis, 1967; Berkeley, 1976), pp. 303-06, 404-0

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Greg, thanks very much.

I am puzzled. There cannot be a much more important fact than that Oswald fled in a car driven by someone else right after the assassination. Pretty clear proof of a conspiraacy, aye? And I submit the same thing is true even if the person getting in to the SW was just a very close look-alike to Oswald. Why would an Oswald look-alike be hurrying away from DP just minutes after the assassination?

CLEARLY the HSCA should have been told about the Forrest claim. Even if Prof Kurtz had lost track of her should he not have told the HSCA so its investigators could track her down?

Another puzzling thing, even though this "new revelation" is of GREAT importance, it is in one sense hardly mentioned in "The Crime of the Century". It only merits two sentences. It certainly deserved more emphasis than that.

So I am simply baffled what to make of this story since if true I think it is compelling evidence of a conspiracy.

And Greg, I have yet to win a Florida lottery myself. I only play when the jackpot gets to be $50 million or more.

Edited by Tim Gratz
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