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Surgeon recounts JFK operation


Guest James H. Fetzer
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In the mid 80's i sent a letter and a copy of the drawing to Dr. McClelland asking him is this what he saw that day he work on President Kennedy. The drawing was the one showing a wound to back of the head.

He sent a reply saying yes that is what he saw that day.

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Really neat comment on Perry. The wages of cover up agent Elmer Moore. Who should have been in jail. And he knew it. Which is why he showed up at the Church Committee with a lawyer.

As per the blown our right side, I think most of us believe there were two shots to the head: one through the right temple and one from behind. This had to result in extensive brain damage. Which is why the original photos by Stringer have been substituted.

I agree.

This is what I see in the Zap film.

And thanks for the info on McClelland, Jim (Fetzer).

Edited by Christopher Hall
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My only nagging thought concerning the head wound for some time is the proof of the where the wounds were as it relates to the shot/trajectory. I simply have never understood how there could be a shot from the knoll given the head wound location. As an example, I've posted a quick diagram below I whipped up in PS.Perhaps with all of the factors considered in (strong possible alteration to the film, which results in missing frames, movement of the vehicle (position & speed) location of the gunmen, firearm ballistics, etc probably answer the question already lol. In any event, just a nagging thought of mine and has been for years. So in other words, could a shot have come from a spot beyond (and further down, in the direction the motorcade was heading)? I honestly do not mean to cause any fierce arguments or confusion as I do not even take my own hypothesis as gospel or concrete and prefer to obviously stick with the hard facts (or "more possible than their negation" evidences/theories).

(*Note: The 'black trajectory' isn't meant to be a trajectory per se, but more of an 'arrow indicator' to point to the statement above the resulting wound I theorize from the pink trajectory.)

post-6300-049127300 1327893385_thumb.png

Edited by B. A. Copeland
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Quick question:

Does anyone here believe "the right side of Kennedy's brain" could have been "blown out" an orange-sized hole in the middle of the back of his head.

The question is , Pat, whether anything Dr. M said to the Rotarians contradicts his WC testimony which is quite explicit about where the damage to the head was:"the right posterior portion of the skull had been extremely blasted.... so that the parietal bone protruded up through the scalp and seemed to be fractured along its right posterior half, as well as some of the occipital bone being fratured along its lateral half, and this sprung open the bones ...in such a way that you could actually look down into the skull cavity itself and see that probably a third or so, at least, of the brain tissue, posterior cerebral and some of the cerebelar tissue had been blasted out." (6WCH 33). This and the drawing made for TT in 1966 (and confirmed in 1994 to Brad Parker in First on the Scene) represent the earliest and most significant accounts of McClleland. Your comment "back of his head" ought to be changed to the "right rear of his head." Regards, Daniel

No, Daniel, the "earliest and most significant accounts of McClelland," made MONTHS before his testimony, are as follows:

1. McClelland's report written on the day of the shooting.

"The cause of death was due to massive head and brain injury from a gunshot wound of the left temple."

2. McClelland's comments to journalist Richard Dudman a few weeks later. These comments were published in the article in which Dudman revealed for the first time that the Secret Service had visited the Parkland doctors, shown them the autopsy report, and told them the autopsists had concluded the throat wound was an exit.

"he and Dr. Perry fully accept the Navy Hospital’s explanation of the course of the bullets."

"I am fully satisfied that the two bullets that hit him were from behind."

"As far as I am concerned, there is no reason to suspect that any shots came from the front."

My point, Daniel, is that McClelland is not the reliable witness many CTs claim him to be. His memory is so shot, in fact, that he has taken to claiming he DREW the "McClelland" drawing, a drawing created by people who'd NEVER even talked to him.

As far as the "orange-sized" hole, are you agreeing with me that the wound described by McClelland and others would not be in the center of the back of the head, but on the right side?

Pat, I am just responding to the specificity obvious in McClelland's WC testimony, that is, where the wound was, what types of brain matter were observed and how much was missing. In that deposition quoted so often it is this characteristic that jumps out at the reader. McClelland's specificity makes him an excellent witness for a wound that is in, using his own words: "the right posterior portion of the skull." Two facets: "posterior," and "right" side. So in the center? No, I am in agreement with you that the center is not what McClelland is describing, nor where I think the wound was. The alternative to an exit wound in the center of the back of the head is not the right side of the head but the right rear of the head.

Pat, remember Nurse Bell asking Perry where the wound was, and Perry having to turn Kennedy's head anatomically to the left? That indicates that though it was on the right part of the skull it was still in the back of the head. Nurse Bell would have no trouble seeing a large hole in Kennedy's head if that hole was "chiefly parietal," as the wound appeared to Humes hours later in Bethesda. But Bell at first could not see the head wound until Perry assisted; and her description of the wound is that is chiefly "occipital."

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Pat thank you for your contextualizing statements. I am not a researcher, so please forgive these questions if they seem bovine.

1) do you mean to suggest that some of McClellan's statements DIRECTLY CONTRADICT each other? If so which quotations?

2) is there any evidence suggesting that McClellan's testimony to the WC may have been shaped by Secret Service pressure?

3) Is your suggestions of "memory problems" based on your stated discrepancies between day of v. WC statements, or based on your statement about his recollections of the drawing, or both? If it is based on his mistaken statement about the drawing, when was this statement made?

4) Daniel types

"The question is , Pat, whether anything Dr. M said to the Rotarians contradicts his WC testimony which is quite explicit about where the damage to the head was:"the right posterior portion of the skull had been extremely blasted.... so that the parietal bone protruded up through the scalp and seemed to be fractured along its right posterior half, as well as some of the occipital bone being fratured along its lateral half, and this sprung open the bones ...in such a way that you could actually look down into the skull cavity itself and see that probably a third or so, at least, of the brain tissue, posterior cerebral and some of the cerebelar tissue had been blasted out." (6WCH 33).

do you maintain that this offers evidence of a shot from the front or a shot from the back?

5) you type "McClelland's report written on the day of the shooting.

"The cause of death was due to massive head and brain injury from a gunshot wound of the left temple."

Do you interpret these words as necessarily implying that the left temple was the exit wound rather than an entrance wound?

The widespread belief that McClelland's initial recollection was that there was an exit wound on the back of the head, and an entrance wound on the left temple, and that he only reported the entrance wound in his report, just doesn't hold up. Here's why:

1. NONE of the Parkland witnesses noted two head wounds. Since only ONE head wound was noticed, and McClelland said it was on the left temple, it only makes sense that he THOUGHT, at least for the first few hours, that the wound was on the left temple. As he was at the head of the table, looking down on Kennedy, and as his report was written hours later, moreover, it seems likely he got mixed-up and thought the wound he saw by Kennedy's right temple was by his left temple.

2. He wrote that it was a "wound OF the left temple." At this point I've read hundreds of autopsy reports and medical descriptions. And have never ever seen an explosive head wound of the back of the head or any other location referred to as "a wound OF the forehead" OR any other location where a PRESUMED wound of entrance might be located.

So WHY did he change his impressions, and testify that the wound was on the back of the head? Well, I suspect this was because that's where most of the other doctors said it was. Within hours of the shooting, Dr. Clark's belief the wound was on the back of the head was common knowledge. Within weeks of the shooting, the recollections of all those writing reports were complied and published in a medical journal. Dr. McClelland would not have wanted to be the lone guy saying "Hold it, fellas, it wasn't on the back of the head, but by the temple!" So he joined in, and, having joined in, began to remember it as they did--at the back of the head.

That Dr. McClelland is "impressionable" is proven, moreover, by the fact that, after years of being asked about the drawing in Thompson's book based on his testimony, he came to believe not only that he'd helped Thompson with the drawing, but had actually drawn it himself! From what I can gather, he first started claiming this in the early nineties, 20 years ago.

That he'd cave to peer pressure is demonstrated, moreover, by his comments to Nova in the 80's and the ARRB in the 90's. While he admitted on both occasions that the autopsy photos of the back of Kennedy's head do not reflect what he remembers, he suggested on both occasions that the photos were the real deal, but that someone had pulled some sagging scalp up over the large explosive wound he recalled seeing. Well, this is NONSENSE of the supreme order. Scalp does not stretch and drop away from explosive exit wounds, but tear. As doctor Clark had noted a large gaping hole missing scalp and bone, moreover, it simply makes no sense to assume McClelland is correct and that the hole noted at Parkland is hidden beneath the scalp in the autopsy photos.

Edited by Pat Speer
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Quick question:

Does anyone here believe "the right side of Kennedy's brain" could have been "blown out" an orange-sized hole in the middle of the back of his head.

The question is , Pat, whether anything Dr. M said to the Rotarians contradicts his WC testimony which is quite explicit about where the damage to the head was:"the right posterior portion of the skull had been extremely blasted.... so that the parietal bone protruded up through the scalp and seemed to be fractured along its right posterior half, as well as some of the occipital bone being fratured along its lateral half, and this sprung open the bones ...in such a way that you could actually look down into the skull cavity itself and see that probably a third or so, at least, of the brain tissue, posterior cerebral and some of the cerebelar tissue had been blasted out." (6WCH 33). This and the drawing made for TT in 1966 (and confirmed in 1994 to Brad Parker in First on the Scene) represent the earliest and most significant accounts of McClleland. Your comment "back of his head" ought to be changed to the "right rear of his head." Regards, Daniel

No, Daniel, the "earliest and most significant accounts of McClelland," made MONTHS before his testimony, are as follows:

1. McClelland's report written on the day of the shooting.

"The cause of death was due to massive head and brain injury from a gunshot wound of the left temple."

2. McClelland's comments to journalist Richard Dudman a few weeks later. These comments were published in the article in which Dudman revealed for the first time that the Secret Service had visited the Parkland doctors, shown them the autopsy report, and told them the autopsists had concluded the throat wound was an exit.

"he and Dr. Perry fully accept the Navy Hospital’s explanation of the course of the bullets."

"I am fully satisfied that the two bullets that hit him were from behind."

"As far as I am concerned, there is no reason to suspect that any shots came from the front."

My point, Daniel, is that McClelland is not the reliable witness many CTs claim him to be. His memory is so shot, in fact, that he has taken to claiming he DREW the "McClelland" drawing, a drawing created by people who'd NEVER even talked to him.

As far as the "orange-sized" hole, are you agreeing with me that the wound described by McClelland and others would not be in the center of the back of the head, but on the right side?

Pat, I am just responding to the specificity obvious in McClelland's WC testimony, that is, where the wound was, what types of brain matter were observed and how much was missing. In that deposition quoted so often it is this characteristic that jumps out at the reader. McClelland's specificity makes him an excellent witness for a wound that is in, using his own words: "the right posterior portion of the skull." Two facets: "posterior," and "right" side. So in the center? No, I am in agreement with you that the center is not what McClelland is describing, nor where I think the wound was. The alternative to an exit wound in the center of the back of the head is not the right side of the head but the right rear of the head.

Pat, remember Nurse Bell asking Perry where the wound was, and Perry having to turn Kennedy's head anatomically to the left? That indicates that though it was on the right part of the skull it was still in the back of the head. Nurse Bell would have no trouble seeing a large hole in Kennedy's head if that hole was "chiefly parietal," as the wound appeared to Humes hours later in Bethesda. But Bell at first could not see the head wound until Perry assisted; and her description of the wound is that is chiefly "occipital."

I agree that the Parkland witnesses, taken in sum, reported that the wound was on the upper RIGHT rear of the head. While I think they were somewhat mistaken, and that the wound was actually above and in front of the ear, I acknowledge that my conclusion is at odds with their statements, when taken in sum. This is why I get so annoyed when certain CTs claim the wound was in the center of the back of the head, or that the Harper fragment was occipital bone, and then claim this is supported by the statements of the Parkland witnesses. What they are pushing just isn't true. The wound location they are pushing is no more in keeping with the statements (and demonstrations) of the Parkland witnesses than the wound shown in the autopsy photos.

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  • 11 months later...

John can you expand on your comment?

Also I am amazed that this story has not stuck around more. The issue is not how novel the content is to researchers. The issue is its comparative value to other events that receive massive media coverage, and the question of why this got none at all. This is the last living doctor in Parkland and it is an incredibly newsworthy event.

That alone is a huge Snag that could be used to attract new interest, given its implications for the entire corporate media cartel.

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I see left temple mentioned a number of times. ?

I assume this is in reference to kennedy while being viewed from the FRONT.

as there is no wound to kennedy;s LEFT temple.

Colorized images

Click on image to view full size.

I colorized this image to help distinguish the scalp from the hair

Be2_hi_colorized2.jpg

Be2_hi_colorized.jpg

Edited by Robin Unger
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