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Surgeon recounts JFK operation

Guest James H. Fetzer

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Throat wound. After deciphering most of what Harold Weisberg wrote, I believe that a comment by Dr. Carrico puts this all to bed.

When commenting on exit and entrance wounds as it dealt with the throat wound,

Dr. Carrico said, There was a round bruise circle around the throat wound..."as it always is."

In forensic analysis, an exit wound may or may not have a bruise circle around it, but only an entrance wound always has the bruise circle around..."as it always is."

Edited by Anthony DeFiore
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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.)


I think the problem is that you're assuming a straight-line trajectory and a bullet that passed through the head in one piece - as we would expect from a full metal jacket.

But the "lead snowstorm" on the X-rays shows both these assumptions to be incorrect and, in fact, shows that the bullet essentially disintergrated on impacting the right temple. As Dr. Cyril Wecht told me recently, "This bullet fired from the GK area most likely was some kind of "soft lead" (i.e., frangible) ammunition rather than the kind of bullet that is the "hero" of the SBT. CE 399 is military type ammunition that would have produced a different pattern of fragmentation and overall craniocerebral damage...After a bullet hits the bony skull and begins to break up, the pattern of expansion will usually become wider (conical type distribution) along the bullet's pathway. A FMJ bullet should not produce a "lead snowstorm" within the brain after striking the calvarium."

As Don Thomas noted, the "conical type distribution" Wecht refers to is exactly what we see on the X-rays. Thomas writes that when a bullet disintergrates on striking a skull, the smaller, dust-like fragments are found closer to the entry point and the larger particles are found closer to the exit. This is because the larger fragments, having greater mass, have greater momentum and are carried further away from the point of entry. This is precisely what is seen in JFK's right lateral X-ray, with the smaller particles located at the right temple and the larger ones towards the top back part of the skull.

Hey there Martin and thanks for the response. I apologize if its been a while. Took me a bit to actually find this post lol. I get the 'gist' of your explanation but I don't understand the flaw with my assumption of a straight traj. and what kind of round. I am not sure of the wind reading that day or the topography but I figured with the knoll's elevation there wouldn't be too much drop (with even a decent powered weapon) or much sway to interfere with a straight trajectory (especially given the distance using the z-film as a reference: from knoll area to limo) Would the round matter much given the entrance wound? My assumption is that there is probably a partially covered wound on the JFK 'death stare' photo and I am also assuming this based on eyewitness testimony and medical evidence. Once we have the entrance wound down and to a 'lead pipe' cinch, well wouldn't it be natural to then posit that the fatal shot would have to be closely aligned with the wound (I mean the round wouldn't have 'curved' or anything would it? (and I am definitely no ballistics/firearms expect as if that probably isn't already obvious lol)

Here is another issue regarding this, lets look at JFK's pose as he is hit, he is slightly leaning towards the left...now lets add in the topography, etc, limo position/speed, etc.....how and where on earth was that gunman? That is one hell of a shot. When you think about it in detail, you had to have an excellent marksman for that final shot. thanks again Martin for any and all discussion.

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