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Oswald and his Marine buddies


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Lee Harvey Oswald's acquaintances from the Marines, questioned by the Warren Commission are all from one of the following places:

1) Santa Ana California

2) Atsugi Japan

3) Keesler MS, USA

Has anyone else ever wondered why there are almost no Army buddies from October 1956 - May 1957?

Surely, he had some acquaintances during and immediately after his basic training?

Here is a list of Oswald's Army buddies (questioned by the WC) and where they served together:

Botelho, Santa Ana

Call, Santa Ana

Camarata, Kessler, Biloxi MS and El Toro

Connor, Atsugi

Delgado, Santa Ana

Donovan, Santa Ana

Graf, Santa Ana and El Toro

Heidel, aka Hidell, Atsugi Japan

Lewis, Santa Ana

Murphy, Atsugi and Santa Ana

Murray, Santa Ana

Osborne, Santa Ana

Powers, Keesler MS and Atsugi Japan

Roussel, Santa Ana

Thornley, El Toro

Also here are a few interesting sections from Donovan's testimony. Also a section of Mac Osborne's:

From WC inerrogations:

Mr. ELY. Do you recall the circumstances under which Oswald left the Marine Corps?

Mr. DONOVAN. Yes; I do.

Mr. ELY. Could you relate them to us, please?

Mr. DONOVAN. I recall that he got a hardship discharge. We offered to get him a flight---that is a hop from El Toro to some place in Texas, his home. He refused. We considered that normal in that if you take a hop you sacrifice your transportation pay. We offered to take him to a bus or train station. He refused. But that is not particularly unusual, either.

I recall that he was gone for some period of time, and shortly before I got out of the Marine Corps, which was mid-December 1959, we received word that he had showed up in Moscow. This necessitated a lot of change of aircraft call signs, codes, radio frequencies, radar frequencies.

He had the access to the location of all bases in the west coast area, all

radio frequencies for all squadrons, all tactical call signs, and the relative strength of all squadrons, number and type of aircraft in a squadron, who was the commanding officer, the authentication code of entering and exiting the ADIZ, which stands for Air Defense Identification Zone. He knew the range of our radar. He knew the range of our radio. And he knew the range of the surrounding units' radio and radar. If you had asked me a month after I left that area, I could not have told you any but our own. Had I wanted to record them, I certainly could have secretly, and taken them with me. Unless he intentionally with malice aforethought wrote them down, I doubt if he wonts have been able to recall them a month later, either.

Mr. ELY. Did Oswald have any kind of clearance?

Mr. DONOVAN. He must have had secret clearance to work in the radar center, because that was a minimum requirement for all of us.

Mr. ELY. Did you ever pick Oswald to act as crew chief?

Mr. DONOVAN. There was occasion when Oswald acted as crew chief. If one of these sergeants had another duty somewhere else, and Oswald was senior man present, he was crew chief. And I had no complaint about his work.

Mr. ELY. Did he show any special ability in this direction?

Mr. DONOVAN. Yes; I think he was competent, very competent. And I think

he did his job well. I don't recall anything coming up that he could not handle.

Mr. ELY. In acting as crew chief, do you think he demonstrated leadership qualities?

Mr. DONOVAN. I don't think he was a leader.

Mr. ELY. However, is it fair to say that any reservations you have about his ability as a leader were not sufficient to make you decide never to use him as a crew chief again?

Mr. DONOVAN. I would not hesitate to use him as a crew chief.

_________________________________________________

AFFIDAVIT OF MACK OSBORNE

The following affidavit was executed by Mack Osborne on May 18, 1964.

STATE OF TEXAS

County of Lubbock, ss:

I, Mack Osborne, 2816 43rd Street, Lubbock, Texas, being first duly sworn, depose and say:

That while I was in the United States Marine Corps, I served in Marine Air Control Squadron 9 in Santa Ann, California, with Lee Harvey Oswald. Prior to his discharge, I shared a room with him.

Oswald was at that time studying Russian. He spent a great deal of his free time reading papers printed in Russian--which I believe he bought in Los Angeles--with the aid of a Russian-English dictionary. I believe he also had some books written in Russian, although I do not remember their names.

I once asked Oswald why he did not go out in the evening like the other men. He replied that he was saving his money, making some statement to the effect that one day he would do something which would make him famous. In retrospect, it is my belief--although he said nothing to this effect--that he had his trip to Russia in mind when he made this statement._____________________________________

Edited by Antti Hynonen
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  • 8 years later...
Guest Tom Scully

No one ever replied to Antti's question as to the pre October, 1956 period of Oswald's enlistment.

I found this FBI report of a late Nov. 1963 interview interesting.:

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?docId=57705&relPageId=71

And from John Hart Ely in a memo dated 29 April, 1964:

DONALD P. CAMARATA: Camarata was with Oswald at Jacksonville, Bilpxi,

El Toro, the Far East, and Santa Ana - in other words, almost all of

Oswald's Marine career. Thus, although his statement to the FBI runs only

one page (see Coram. Doc. 17, p. 4)

my suspicion is that he must remember

more about Oswald than he told the FBI. Moreover, those things he does

remember are interesting. For example, he goes into detail concerning

Oswald's appreciation of Russian culture, and is the only man who un-

equivocally stated that it had been rumored that Oswald was responsible

for Shrand's death. I therefore think we should take Camarata's deposition.

He lives in Capitola, California.

Camarata's deposition was taken on 19 May, 1964. No further details were obtained from him.

The FBI learned of a former US Marine named Felde who had been in Oswald's boot camp squad of eight

and was with Oswald from October, 1956, via newspaper and magazine reports quoting Felde during the last five

weeks of 1963. The FBI finally located Felde and interviewed him on 25 June, 1964, after John Ely's memo

of 29 April. The FBI interview report mentions that Felde and Oswald were in San Diego from 23 October, 1956,

then went to Camp Pendelton in January, 1957 and the two were assigned to live in a tent with six others until May.

Felde claimed he and Oswald were then ordered to Jacksonville where he trained with Oswald there as well,

and that they both went on to Memphis. The FBI report includes no other names of Felde's or Oswald's fellow Marines.:

http://www.maryferrell.org/mffweb/archive/viewer/showDoc.do?mode=searchResult&absPageId=366547

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No one ever replied to Antti's question as to the pre October, 1956 period of Oswald's enlistment.

I found this FBI report of a late Nov. 1963 interview interesting.:

http://www.maryferre...05&relPageId=71

And from John Hart Ely in a memo dated 29 April, 1964:

DONALD P. CAMARATA: Camarata was with Oswald at Jacksonville, Bilpxi,

El Toro, the Far East, and Santa Ana - in other words, almost all of

Oswald's Marine career. Thus, although his statement to the FBI runs only

one page (see Coram. Doc. 17, p. 4)

my suspicion is that he must remember

more about Oswald than he told the FBI. Moreover, those things he does

remember are interesting. For example, he goes into detail concerning

Oswald's appreciation of Russian culture, and is the only man who un-

equivocally stated that it had been rumored that Oswald was responsible

for Shrand's death. I therefore think we should take Camarata's deposition.

He lives in Capitola, California.

Camarata's deposition was taken on 19 May, 1964. No further details were obtained from him.

The FBI learned of a former US Marine named Felde who had been in Oswald's boot camp squad of eight

and was with Oswald from October, 1956, via newspaper and magazine reports quoting Felde during the last five

weeks of 1963. The FBI finally located Felde and interviewed him on 25 June, 1964, after John Ely's memo

of 29 April. The FBI interview report mentions that Felde and Oswald were in San Diego from 23 October, 1956,

then went to Camp Pendelton in January, 1957 and the two were assigned to live in a tent with six others until May.

Felde claimed he and Oswald were then ordered to Jacksonville where he trained with Oswald there as well,

and that they both went on to Memphis. The FBI report includes no other names of Felde's or Oswald's fellow Marines.:

http://www.maryferre...bsPageId=366547

Thanks for posting this. I was unaware that the Felde interview (which is in the 26 Volumes as WCE 1962) was Commission Document 1229 ("CD 1229").

Also note: the cover page of the FBI report states that Felde was interviewed by reporter Paul Salsini of the Milwaukee Journal , and that his interview was published on 11/24/63. I have never seen that original interview, and cannot locate it via "NewspaperArchive".

If anyone lives near Milwaukee, and can locate it at a local library, which has microfilm records of this newspaper, I'd be interested in obtaining a copy.

FWIW: I have tried over the years to locate Allen R. Felde, to no avail. He's an important witness to Oswald's Marine Period, and its too bad he was not called as a witness by the Warren Commission, and questioned in detail.

DSL

4/16/13; 4 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Edited by David Lifton
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No one ever replied to Antti's question as to the pre October, 1956 period of Oswald's enlistment.

I found this FBI report of a late Nov. 1963 interview interesting.:

http://www.maryferre...05&relPageId=71

And from John Hart Ely in a memo dated 29 April, 1964:

DONALD P. CAMARATA: Camarata was with Oswald at Jacksonville, Bilpxi,

El Toro, the Far East, and Santa Ana - in other words, almost all of

Oswald's Marine career. Thus, although his statement to the FBI runs only

one page (see Coram. Doc. 17, p. 4)

my suspicion is that he must remember

more about Oswald than he told the FBI. Moreover, those things he does

remember are interesting. For example, he goes into detail concerning

Oswald's appreciation of Russian culture, and is the only man who un-

equivocally stated that it had been rumored that Oswald was responsible

for Shrand's death. I therefore think we should take Camarata's deposition.

He lives in Capitola, California.

Camarata's deposition was taken on 19 May, 1964. No further details were obtained from him.

The FBI learned of a former US Marine named Felde who had been in Oswald's boot camp squad of eight

and was with Oswald from October, 1956, via newspaper and magazine reports quoting Felde during the last five

weeks of 1963. The FBI finally located Felde and interviewed him on 25 June, 1964, after John Ely's memo

of 29 April. The FBI interview report mentions that Felde and Oswald were in San Diego from 23 October, 1956,

then went to Camp Pendelton in January, 1957 and the two were assigned to live in a tent with six others until May.

Felde claimed he and Oswald were then ordered to Jacksonville where he trained with Oswald there as well,

and that they both went on to Memphis. The FBI report includes no other names of Felde's or Oswald's fellow Marines.:

http://www.maryferre...bsPageId=366547

Thanks for posting this. I was unaware that the Felde interview (which is in the 26 Volumes as WCE 1962) was Commission Document 1229 ("CD 1229").

Also note: the cover page of the FBI report states that Felde was interviewed by reporter Paul Salsini of the Milwaukee Journal , and that his interview was published on 11/24/63. I have never seen that original interview, and cannot locate it via "NewspaperArchive".

If anyone lives near Milwaukee, and can locate it at a local library, which has microfilm records of this newspaper, I'd be interested in obtaining a copy.

FWIW: I have tried over the years to locate Allen R. Felde, to no avail. He's an important witness to Oswald's Marine Period, and its too bad he was not called as a witness by the Warren Commission, and questioned in detail.

DSL

4/16/13; 4 AM PDT

Los Angeles, California

For those who wish to read the FBI interview of Felde, it is WCE 1962.

I contacted the research staff at the Milwaukee Public Library and was able to obtain a photocopy of the 11/23/63 interview with Oswald's fellow Marine, Donald Felde, which (as noted in the synopsis of the FBI interview (CD 1229, as posted above by Tom Scully [Thank you, Tom!]) appeared in the Milwaukee Journal of 11/24/63 under the headline: Oswald 'Was a Loner,' Milwaukeean Says.

The complete text is below, interspersed with a few of my own comments. Also note: Gary Mack sent me a notice that states that Felde lived in Arizona, and died in 2008. (No further details provided).

My favorite quote from this 11/23 interview in The Milwaukee Journal:

Oswald appeared to be greatly interested in politics. “I was four years away from voting age,” Felde said. “I didn’t know the names of senators or where they were from. But he could rattle them off. . . and he knew their ideals and what they stood for.”

Its really a pity this person was not called as a witness, and a very thorough deposition taken.

Here is the complete text of the interview, as published on 11/24/63:

“He was a loner.”

That description was given by a Milwaukee man Saturday night [i.e., 11/23/63] of Lee Harvey Oswald, the 24 year olf former marine who has been charged with slaying President Kennedy.

The Milwaukeean is Allen R. Felde, 24, of 3307 N. 22nd St. Felde went through marine boot came and combat training with Oswald in California in the winder of 1956-57.

Although they were together for 26 weeks—including one stretch in a tent housing eight recruits—Felde said he never got to know Oswald well.

“He was not my friend,” Felde said. “He was pretty hard to understand.”

Both Felde and Oswald were 17 at the time. Felde remembers Oswald as a quiet, serious youth “trying to find himself.”

“The rest of us were young, too,” Felde said. “We used to wrestle and horse around. But he would have his bunk in the corner and stay there, reading a book.

“He didn’t have any friends. On liberty, we would go to Los Angeles or Tijuana, Mexico. He would ride on the bus with us, but when we got off he went his way and we went ours.”

What kind of books did Oswald read?

“I don’t know,” Felde said. “But he didn’t read any sex magazines or any trash. They looked like good quality books. He must have gotten them in the mail.”

Felde went through 16 weeks of boot camp with Oswald at the marine corps recruit depot, San Diego, and through 10 weeks of combat training at Camp Pendleton.

They were separated after that. Felde went to a jet squadron in Florida. Oswald later went to Japan, where he got into trouble and was tried twice by summary court martial. He was given an undesirable discharge from the marine reserves in 1960 when he renounced his United States citizenship in Russia.

During marine training, Felde said, Oswald appeared to be greatly interested in politics.

“I was four years away from voting age,” Felde said. “I didn’t know the names of senators or where they were from. But he could rattle them off. . . and he knew their ideals and what they stood for.”

But adjusting to marine life may have been hard.

“We called him a yardbird—someone who’s a loner and was always getting latrine duty,” he said. (DSL note: similar to Thornley WC testimony).

Felde is now a machine operator for the Pfister & Vogel Tanning Co. He has not seen Oswald since their days at Camp Pendleton. *

*DSL note: this contradicts the June, 1964 FBI interview (WCE 1962) in which the FBI reports that Felde said they went to Memphis, Tenn, for training. So either the reporter got this wrong, or the FBI agent got it wrong, or Felde said something different on 11/23/63 than he did six months later.

When he dug out his own pictures of marine lie, he found a group shot of his boot camp platoon. Oswald was there. On the back, other recruits had signed their autographs. Oswald had not.

# # # END OF STORY # # #

A picture of Felde is published along with the story.

DSL

4/17/13; 9PM PDT

Los Angeles, California

Edited by David Lifton
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