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What bullet trajectory created the back-of-head blowout wound?

Sandy Larsen

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21 hours ago, Chris Davidson said:
On 12/14/2017 at 6:20 PM, Sandy Larsen said:

But, according to David J.'s diagram, that bullet would have blown out the left side of JFK's head.




How would you manipulate Jackie's head position to recreate JFK's at z312?





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5 hours ago, Robin Unger said:
12 hours ago, David Josephs said:

I was under the impression we agreed that the glass jar helps orient the image
and the scalp was reflected as usual - forward and back.

Yes, David on this much we are in agreement.

I agree with this as well, FWIW.

Though when the photo with the glass jar was taken, JFK's head may have been oriented straight forward (looking at the ceiling as he lies on his back), or to the right a little, or to the left a little. So the orientation isn't perfectly fixed. (As far as I can tell.)


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On ‎12‎/‎13‎/‎2017 at 3:40 PM, Richard Price said:

After happening across a post which included the Cabluck photo showing the policeman at the bridge/fence area having an alteration, something came to mind that I had wanted to comment on before.  I found a "hopefully" scale drawing of the entire plaza (attached below).  I have added a line from the fence area near the railroad bridge to the impact point shown for Z313.  I would like those of you more knowledgeable about the measurements/angles/slopes to comment.  I'm sure this is a rehash of something that has been commented on before, but I  have trouble trying to keep up with the enormity of information and piecing it all together.  A quick synopsis of my thoughts:  1) A shooter positioned near the far corner of the fence has almost an identical line of fire as one positioned near the "badgeman" position. 2) With my totally visual calculations, I have the angle from the shooter to JFK to be about a 45 degree angle.  3) With JFK's head tilted downward slightly and approximately 45 degrees to his right (again visual interpretation) at Z313.  This would present a direct line from JFK's right temple to the rear of the head area which was blown out.  It would also be very close to tangential and should definitely throw him back and somewhat to the left.  Thanks for any thoughts or input.  I particularly would like to know what Chris thinks of this, since I think he has a good grip on the math, angles, slopes and distances.

Dealey Plaza.jpg

Hi Richard, your theory of shot position to me has equal validity to that of David Josephs, sorry I can't see much solid support for either. Your proposal of the position does at least have witness evidence of persons unknown in the vicinity. I think your shot position would require a change of bullet direction after entry, an entirely likely scenario and one that doesn't seem to be acknowledged by everyone.

On ‎12‎/‎13‎/‎2017 at 6:49 PM, David Josephs said:

If this is the best we have and from which conclusions are formulated...

None of the medical evidence is worth a pile of spit....  It was altered, changed, redone, etc...



The best that can be done, in my view is look for evidence that supports other evidence. The Xray scatter pattern I referred to is supported by ; The odd black patch on Kennedy's head in Zapruder, most Parkland and Bethesda witness statements,  and the suggestion of alteration to the Xrays (not complete fakery, they MAY be total fakes). I feel confident there was a rear blowout, and its location is well established. I find the Lancer presentation fairly persuasive, along with other evidence of the entry location for the matching headshot. I don't discount ANY of the proposals for shooter location based on this thread so far.

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6 hours ago, Sandy Larsen said:

I agree with this as well, FWIW.

Though when the photo with the glass jar was taken, JFK's head may have been oriented straight forward (looking at the ceiling as he lies on his back), or to the right a little, or to the left a little. So the orientation isn't perfectly fixed. (As far as I can tell.)

It's important to remember, but it appears no one here is remembering or is ignoring, is Pat Speers said the usual scalp flipping that is done during an autopsy was NOT done in this case because they said the head was so messed up they didn't have to do it. Therefore, if you're trying to orient the flap of skin you see in the open head shot to match the standard flipping, it would be incorrect doing so.  Because it was NOT done like that.

I'm puzzled too why the glass jar is such as issue to orienting the photos. In the top of the head autopsy photo, there is NO glass jar in it.  Then in the open head one there is.  Why does that matter to have the jar orient the photos? As I explained previously you can take two photos of the same subject but with different objects in them, crop and reorient one photo and overlay it on the other, and it still represents the same subject matter! 

The hole on the rear of the head, combined with Chesser's recent work on the X-rays shows this is the most likely outcome of a front to back tangential shot.


Can someone explain this...


How can an exit wound be that high up on the head? Why do you not see his body move upward from an exit wound from the top right of the head in the Z film? Instead, his body moves backward toward the car seat, as if someone put their fingers on his forehead and pushed him from that point. To get an exit wound that high up, you'd have to put a gun almost underneath of him.

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On 12/12/2017 at 11:08 PM, Sandy Larsen said:

Thanks for responding David. But this question is for people who believe there was a blowout wound on the back of the head.


Hi Sandy:

Let me supply a two pieces of information, and add some observation:s (Item #3):

Item: When I interviewed the Dallas doctors--and my first round of interviews was in 1966/67, and were by phone--the doctor who spent the most time with me on the phone was Dr. Peters.  He said that the head wound--what has been referred to as the "blowup"--was the size of "a hen's egg" (i.e., an ordinary store bought egg) and that would be reasonably consistent with Carrico's profferred measurement of 5 x 7 centimeters.  As to location, he said it was down on the right side of the skull, towards the bottom, and that the defect was sufficiently low that he believed he could see the occipital lobes of the brain resting against the foramen magnum (the hole at the bottom of the skull, in the occipital bone, through which the spinal cord enters the brain etc.)  In short, his description was rather consistent with the defect shown in the "McClelland diagram," as published in Six Seconds, which had not yet been published.

ITEM #2: Back in 1965/66, when I was intensely interested in collecting negatives and prints of the Moorman photo, I was in San Francisco, either at a wire service office, or at a newspaper (and I don't remember which) and they had a negative of the Moorman photo which was the original neg generated on their wire service machine back on 11/22/63.  "Here, you want this? You can have it" was their attitude; and yes, I did want it. That Moorman negative, plus the half-tone (of Moorman) that I describe in Chapter 1 of B.E., provided an good image of what (at first) appeared to be a "shoulder pad" , on Kennedy's right shoulder.  Closer inspection persuaded me that that was no "shoulder pad"; rather, it was a piece of President Kennedy's scalp (probably with bone attached on the underside) as it fell from the right rear of his head, and into the back seat of the car.  So the shot that caused this "right rear blowout" must have impacted within a split second of Moorman's camera shutter being open, and taking that photo, so it caught the image of a piece of JFK's head, as it was detached from the skull, and falling into the back seat. Which brings me to the next point.

ITEM #3: What was the origin of that shot, and where did it come from?  First of all, I'm a strong partisan of the idea that Kennedy was very likely struck in the left temple, as Dr. McClelland noted in his original handwritten report.  But more important, and even if that were true, what were the details?  Exactly how did it impact. what was the origin, and why did it create the exit wound at the right rear?  I'm afraid that my answer will be most unsatisfying to many, but I believe that until and unless the riddle of the Zapruder film is (finally) resolved, we won't know, for sure.  In other words, I believe the film was altered, that frames are missing, and that we simply cannot trust a frame like, say, 312, and conclude: well, this is the true geometry at that moment in time, so how can we explain that right rear exit?--especially if, for corroboration, I am correct about what I believe to be on the Moorman negatives that I obtained back in 19655/66.  Finally.  .

ITEM #4: I am not going to debate film alteration in this post (see my essay Pig on a Leash, for my views) except to say that I went to Dallas in November 1971, specifically for the purpose of interviewing the "car stop" witnesses.  I interviewed 5 of them, and I have great confidence in what they told me. The memory I have--and this is all on audio tape (made on a SONY TC-800, the same recorder that Nixon used for his "White House tapes") - is that of -Bill and Gayle Newman.  I was at their home, and we went over this very carefully.  It was their reality, without any question, that the President's car stopped (momentarily) right in front of them.  When I told Bill Newman that the Z film which was at the National Archives (and had had not yet been shown publicly--remember, this was 1971) showed no such stop, he said: "I don't are what the film shows. It stopped. . right in front of us."  (quotes, from memory. and he was quite emphatic on that point).   Now I know that there are many technical arguments that can be made, but I'm not interested in debating the point, here in this post. I believe that someday this matter may be resolved, quite definitively, by the production of unaltered film footage. Meanwhile, I'm just taking this opportunity to point out what (to me) seems obvious: the reason the entry point for the bullet which caused the right rear blowout is so puzzling, is because the film record has been altered.

Anyway, Sandy, in view of your technical background--not all that dissimilar to my own--I can understand why you are puzzled about the entry point.  Because I have been, too.


12/16/2017 --5:30 a.m.

Orange County, Calif.

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On 12/13/2017 at 4:21 PM, Michael Walton said:

BEST EVIDENCE?! OMG that mad fairy tale of thrumming helicopters and mad scientists with scalpels at the ready to carve up the body?!

You've got to be kidding. I stopped believing that 30 years ago when I was 18 years old LOL 

Oh, great. A smart alek  who doesn't know what he's talking about.  Just what is needed on this forum.

Is this the best you can do at age 48?


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On 12/14/2017 at 2:15 AM, Michael Walton said:

Pat, I wanted to comment on your comment. You're right that David Lifton has been around for 50 years. But his basic premise - that some how, some way, while Kennedy's wife was with the coffin during the entire time from Dallas until you see her get off the plane with it, military and/or intelligence personnel squirreled the body away from the back of Air Force One, put it in a helicopter, and flew away with it so other military/intelligence/medico personnel could look at it and cover up all manner of conspiracy - is right up there with many of the other "out-there" theories that have been bandied about over the years.  [Deleted, as irrelevant -- DSL]

So IMO, it doesn't matter how long Lifton has been around, nor does it matter how long Armstrong has been around. And yes, maybe they spent years interviewing witnesses, collecting snatches of statements from these people. I'm not saying all of the statements are incorrect.  But to take a statement here and there and weave a story of body snatching and Oswald clones, at best, completely muddles the conspiracy record and, at worst, is dishonest to the Kennedy case.


Michael Walton:

Your post really comes off as something generated by an uninformed smart alek who apparently thinks he knows much more than he obviously does.

1. The sequence of arrivals at Bethesda--that the body arrived a good 20 minutes before the Dallas coffin, and arrived in a body bag, that was inside a shipping casket, absolutely establishes that the body was not in the coffin when Air Force One took off from Dallas.  Instead of sitting on your duff, and making grandiose pronouncements, go read (or re-read) Chapter 25 of B.E.  Also be informed that there's a second witness, besides the late Dennis David, to the sequence of arrivals.  (See Point #2)

2. The second witness is Donald Rebentisch, a U.S. Navy person who came forward within a day or two of the original release of Best Evidence. I wrote up the details about who he was in the 1982 paperback edition of B.E. (the second of its four publishers) and made sure that that 1982 epilogue was published then, and in all remaining editions.  Rebentisch was part of the group that Dennis David had assembled to assist in the offloading of the shipping casket, from the black hearse which arrived at the back, around 6:35 p.m.  The Fifth Estate--the Canadian version of 60 Minutes--found him highly credible, and the producer (Brian McKenna) and I flew to Grand Rapids, Michigan, and interviewed Rebentisch for the CBC broadcast, titled  "The Empty Casket", one of the highest rated shows ever broadcast at CBC.  There will be an e-book edition of B.E., and one of the topics I intend to include is Rebentisch, and the corroboration he affords for the account of Dennis David.

3. Neither I, nor Brian McKenna, collected "snatches of statements". . . we conducted a fully professional filmed interviews. So did Stanhope Gould, who was the producer for Walter Cronkite at CBS News, and handled the Watergate coverage.  He and Sylvia Chase reviewed the B.E. video, and the key witnesses, filming them again for a 1988 broadcast on KRON-TV, and its sister station in St. Louis.  Stanhope told the San Francisco media that "David Lifton has found and developed courtroom quality evidence that President Kennedy's body was intercepted between Dallas and Bethesda" (quotes, from memory). Rest assured, Michael Walton, that Brian McKenna and Stanhope Gould have a level of professionalism that you can only achieve--or should I say "hope to achieve"-- in your dreams.

4. The puzzle of just when the body was removed from the coffin, which the mathematics of the arrival times shows must have occurred, and what rationale was given to the Secret Service agents involved, is a legitimate subject for historical inquiry. But to engage in such an inquiry, you have to get your facts straight, and not approach the situation as simply a juvenile smart aleck who wants to engage in insults. To begin with, and contrary to your glib assertions, Jacqueline Kennedy was not with the coffin "during the entire time from Dallas until you see her get off the plane."  Take another look, Michael Walton, and you will see that, in your haste to throw around insults, there is another crucial period which you have neglected. In addition. . 

5. No one said the body was at "the back of Air Force One, [and then] put in a helicopter. . "  Certainly, I never did. Of course, you're free to make up your own "facts"--if that's what you prefer.

6. There's been quite a number of developments in this area, since Best Evidence was first published (in January 1981) and long before you joined the London Forum (about two years ago), posting about 1300 posts in the space of two years. So I guess you like to hang out at your computer, and impress people that you know a lot. Well, guess again.   Suggestion: Study the record before running your mouth.

7. Regarding your characterization that a "helicopter. . flew away with it (the body) so other military/intelligence/medico personnel could look at it and cover up all manner of conspiracy" is completely sophomoric, and the give-away that you really don't understand what the heck you are talking about.  You certainly have no accurate conception of what was going on aboard Air Force One from the time that Lyndon Johnson boarded the plane at about 1:40 p.m. CST, to the time that the hearse arrived at planeside from Parkland Hospital with the bronze coffin which, undoubtedly, contained President Kennedy's body--at that time.   Also, there's another small fact you seem to have neglected, in your haste to appear so sophisticated and well informed. . .

8. There are about six hours of tapes of AF-1 communications that are currently missing.  Do you think they were discussing White House grocery lists?

9. No one "[took] a statement [from] here and there [to] weave a story of body snatching. . "  If that's your concept of how a legal investigation works, or what happened in this case, or how I pursued my own investigation, you've got a lot to learn.  And then to say that my analysis "completely muddles the conspiracy record and, at worst, is dishonest to the Kennedy case. . "  Really, one has to wonder who appointed you to be the judge of such things, not to mention  what you studied during the years of your formal education. . basket weaving? 

10. I strongly suggest that you take a small sabbatical, and post less, and read more. Also, I would appreciate it if you would not include me in the same sentence as Armstrong. I think his book has, here and there, some interesting data, and there was a period (some 23 years ago) when I communicated with him by fax and phone, and engaged him in debate, and I understand how much effort he has put into this case (probably much more than you have, I might add); but no, I don't subscribe to his major interpretation(s) or any of his major hypotheses.


12/16/2017 - 6:35 a.m. PST

South Orange County, California

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57 minutes ago, David Lifton said:

Oh, great. A smart alek  who doesn't know what he's talking about.  Just what is needed on this forum.

Is this the best you can do at age 48?


David, my apologies. For what it's worth, my sister in law gave your book to me years ago when I was 18.  I read it and was like, "Wow!" As time went on and I had the opportunity to study the case more on my own - and with the internet too - the body snatching and altering theory does not hold water for me any more along with many other out-there theories.

Like for example the Hardly Lee theory.

I think for me, there has to be some plausibility and real-worldness (not a word there but hope you know what I mean) for when people discuss this case. How would the military and intel and medico people even know what to cut out or alter on the body that soon after the murder when none of them really knew what the result was going to be?

Another way I look at it is loose lips sink ships and this also applies to the planners of the murder.  They really did not want this to be a huge deal, telling everyone it was going to happen.  The fewer in the know the better.

So one other researcher here said, "well, they took the body in Dallas..." as if the planners either 1) snatched it at Love Field, flew it to DC and did the cutting; or 2) or snatched it at Love Field, did the cutting and put it back on the plane to DC. To me, that's even more far-fetched.

But back to your premise - people were moving around, crying, smiling, grabbing, walking...confusion reigned. I just find it very hard to believe that the organizers would have the time to do what your theory says.  I do agree about the ambulance decoy though as I posted up earlier a story about that where they used a decoy to try to create some subterfuge to get the body - and most probably the family members - to Bethesda with as little disruption as possible. But to take that and other quotes and testimony and weave it into a body snatching and alteration story just seems to fly in the face of real-world actions at that time.

But as for the snark, my apologies.

EDIT - I also want to add for what it's worth that I'm sure you worked very hard on this. I know what hard work is having done so for many years writing and producing. So there's that as well.

Edited by Michael Walton
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On 12/14/2017 at 7:45 AM, David Josephs said:

Reaching new levels of idiocy...    48 years old and still playing the man-child fool...

Congrats - you've reached Craig Lamson and Paul May territory...


What I like best--and nominate for the most ludicrous misrepresentation of all, and a testament to fundamental ignorance--is that there were people with "scalpels at the ready prepared to carve up the body."  Pardon me, but this wouldn't even pass for text in a cheap novel.


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On 12/14/2017 at 8:33 AM, Sandy Larsen said:


Admiral Calvin Galloway himself admitted that there was a decoy ambulance, and in fact he drove it himself in a little chase scene, the one described by Lifton in Best Evidence.

Lieutenant Lipsey was told about the decoy. He was told that the purpose of it was to keep JFK's body away from the crowds.

If we are to believe these two men, then we also have to believe that somehow JFK's body WAS transferred to another casket, and that that casket was put in the decoy ambulance. Because what good would a decoy be if the body wasn't aboard it? (The official ornate casket stayed with Jackie and was in view of the public and the press the whole time after arriving at Andrews Air Force Base.)

But things like this don't matter to Michael Walton. Because his thought process works like this:  "This sounds silly, or I don't find it plausible. Therefore it didn't happened. Damn the evidence."



Thanks for your post.  I don't have much more time to spend on this guy, and his commentary, which I'm starting to realize is basically vapid.

But let me just point out a few things, for those reading this thread, and who genuinely want to know what happened, or at least, would like some hint of what I belive.

Based on interviews (not yet published, in full), here are some conclusions I have reached:

1. The original alteration of JFK's body (bullet retrieval, wound alteration, etc) was planned to take place in Dallas, and within 30 minutes of the shooting.

2. It did not happen because, among other unexpected events, Governor Connally was unexpectedly shot. (You can take this statement to the bank--the shooting of Governor Connally was completely unexpected, and was not in anyone's scenario. It completely upset a reasonably well-designed apple cart.)

3. As a consequence of an out-of-control situation that developed, i.e., as a result of unexpected events (such as the shooting of JC), President Kennedy's body left Parkland Hospital without an autopsy, and basically in the same condition as it was immediately after the shooting.

4. Upon reaching AF-1 (25 minutes before the Dallas coffin's arrival),  Lyndon Johnson got on the phone, and reached "higher authority"--which, in this case, was Secretary of Defense McNamara. (Remember: the rest of the Kennedy cabinet was out over the Pacific, with Sec State Rusk).

5. As a result of that phone call, and others, arrangements were made to arrange what I will politely call a "political autopsy."  As in: "This is above your pay grade, doctor. . Do as you're told. . . We're trying to prevent a nuclear war" etc.  All of that is (i.e., was) baloney, but that is what I believe happened. Humes was not Simon Pure; and he did not "alter the body". But he did "follow orders" in what turned out to be an extraordinary situation.

6. At about 2:15 p.m. CST, the body was offloaded from Air Force One at Love Field, on the starboard side, via the rear starboard half-door, while Jacqueline Kennedy and all the Kennedy aides were down on the tarmac, on the port side, and prior to Jacqueline Kennedy boarding the aircraft.

7. The result generated a blood trail--requiring an extensive plane cleaning at Andrews-- that will be addressed in Final Charade.

8. By phone, and possibly via McNamara, Robert Kennedy was provided with a "limited hangout" which "explained" what had to be done to eliminate the (supposed) "threat of war"--again, this was LBJ, bull-xxxxting his way into the presidency.  I don't believe that RFK believed what he was being told, but McNamara did. And that paved the way for the subsequent  high level cover-up.

9. Regarding the events at Bethesda. . . focus on Chapter 16 of B.E., and realize that, if the body was not in the coffin when AF-1 took off from Dallas, then the "ambulance chase" at Bethesda was not the time when the body was first "intercepted"; rather, it was quite the opposite; it was the time when the body, which had been already been intercepted (i.e., already covertly diverted) hours earlier, and prior to take-off, was being "returned" to the coffin in which it began its journey, so that the US Army multi-service casket team would witness a coffin opening at the Bethesda morgue, a coffin opening that contained the body.  As to the Navy personnel, they were hushed up with the gag order. (See Chapter 27, B.E). 

10.  Note: The ambulance chase occurred starting at about 7:12 p.m.; the official coffin opening occurred at 8 p.m. The real question is what happened between 6:35 p.m., when the body first arrived in the morgue, in the shipping casket, and 7:17 pm, when the FBI arrived.  I now know considerably more about this crucial  period than I did when I wrote B.E... and it will all be spelled out in Final Charade.   (Read Chapter 28 to get up to speed as to what I knew back in 1980).

11. The body did not go to Walter Reed. Those radio transmissions are real, part of a plan to return the body to the coffin, which didn't work. How do I know ?

12. I had a two-hour meeting , in person and  tape recorded, on July 15, 1980, with Major General Chester Clifton at his Washington DC office. I learned a lot from that interview.

13. Also note: remember Hubert Clark--whose account (based on my telephone interview) was published in Chapter 16?  Well, about ten years after B.E. was published, someone sat down with Clark and did an excellent video interview, and I now have that interview, in full living color, on a DVD. Its really quite good, and I may be using it either in Final Charade, or in the e-book version of B.E.

All I can say is: the quest to find the truth goes on, and this is a complex case.

It requires study and careful analysis.

Wisecracks (and insults) won't do.

Stay tuned. . .


12/16/17 - 7:15 a.m. PST



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59 minutes ago, David Lifton said:

All I can say is: the quest to find the truth goes on, and this is a complex case.

It requires study and careful analysis.

Wisecracks (and insults) won't do.

I want to get to the truth too.  Just not in a way that comes off as a story or stories that are not based on facts. For example, Bill Simpich's State Secret is an excellent story that is based on the available record of LHO's life and "legend" during his false defection up until he was murdered on 11/24.

As I said before, the decoy ambulance appeared to actually happen.  However, it did NOT occur because the body was taken somewhere else to be altered to cover up or hide some as yet unknown cover-up of the body's wounds. Does it mean that personnel looked at the body BEFORE the autopsy officially began?  Yes, that is a possibility.  It does NOT mean however that any alteration to the body took place before the official autopsy began.

As also said above, my apologies if my original post sounded like a wisecrack. However, my stand on this story of body alteration does not change.

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3 hours ago, David Lifton said:

[Stanhope Gould] and Sylvia Chase reviewed the B.E. video, and the key witnesses, filming them again for a 1988 broadcast on KRON-TV, and its sister station in St. Louis.



Thank you for your detailed posts.

It was the KRON-TV documentary you mentioned that got me interested in the JFK assassination. I was living in San Jose at the time (working in my garage on a high-tech startup... a typical endeavor for Silicon Valley engineers). Sylvia Chase was a household name there. The first thing I did upon retiring was to read the book Best Evidence.


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