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I wanted to share here a story that I heard from Robert Nagell, Dick Nagell's son, in 1997 or possibly 1998. Robert Nagell also sent me a high resolution scan of a photograph of Dick Nagell, which I have attached at the bottom of this post for anyone interested. Look at the bottom of the image and you can see the edge of the photograph that was scanned by the flatbed scanner that Robert used to scan the photo for me. 

So, this is the story: shortly after Veteran's Day in 1997 (possibly 98, but I think it was 97), I sent an email to Robert Nagell.

At that time I had just read "The Man Who Knew Too Much" and I did some "googling" to see if I could find Robert. I put that in quotes because the search engines used at that time were Lycos and AltaVista. I managed to find an email address for a Robert Nagell who was an alumni of the University of San Diego. 

So, I sent this Robert Nagell an email and I asked him if he was the son of Richard Case Nagell. He replied that he was, and I replied to him and told him that I had just read a book about his father and Veteran's Day had made me think about his dad, I told him that I thought his father was a patriot who had received a bad deal and said some generally complimentary things about his father. 

To my surprise, Robert wrote me back again and attached a high-quality hi-resolution scan of a photograph of Dick Nagell in his military uniform. 

In addition, Robert told me an anecdote that I will relay here to the best of my recollection. This was over 20 years ago so my memory is not exact but I remember the general details of what he told me.

Robert told me that after his father died, two people showed up. I don't know if they showed up at Robert's house, or if it was at Nagell's place while Robert was there. I just remember it was right after his dad died. Anyway, he said these two people showed up and told him they worked for the U.S. State Department. They said they wanted to look at Dick Nagell's files and belongings because they were investigating a North Korean operation involving counterfeit U.S. $100 bills. Robert said he felt their story was bogus, because his dad would never be involved in something like that. I don't recall his exact words other than him saying this pair of people were suspicious to him based on the story they gave about counterfeit money.

I don't remember if he said they stayed for a long time or not, just that they were interested in Dick Nagell's things.

I want to say that he told me they went through his stuff with Robert's permission but I just don't remember that. I was just a kid (20-21 years old) at the time, and I was happy to be sent this picture of Dick Nagell and what Robert told me of course made me think "oh my god, these people were looking for Nagell's "evidence" -- the tape and photos he said he saw that had Oswald on them. For sure this story reinforced my belief that Dick Nagell was the "real deal." 

I recently sent this story over to a researcher who knows Dick Russell to ask him to pass it along, as I believe Robert Nagell would probably recount this curious story if someone talked to him given how open and friendly he was to me, a total stranger to him. 

Any researchers out there interested in the Nagell story (either pro or con) might want to ask Robert Nagell about this, and see what he says. 

Here is the full high-resolution photo that Robert sent me back then. I posted it on my busprod.com website back then and it's still available on archive[dot]org which archived my website from 1999. (my site was mostly a page of images, links to articles

Since then I have seen this photo pop up on other websites, but the resolution of the image in circulation right now is nowhere as high quality as the image I was sent which you can see below. If you look closely, you can see the very bottom of the photograph--it was clearly scanned using a flatbed scanner. This detail is cropped out of most copies of this image that you find circulating on the web right now.

Robert took this photo and scanned it for me at the time, which I felt was a very nice thing for him to do given I was just a stranger, some kid, writing to him about a sad subject: his father who had recently passed away, who he didn't exactly have the best relationship with.

https://web.archive.org/web/20010807004740fw_/http://www.busprod.com/hellion/jfk/photos/NAGELLRC.JPG

NAGELLRC.JPG

 

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Interesting story and great pic. Thanks for sharing.

I find it difficult to imagine that Oswald was a Russian agent. Didn’t Nagell assert that? 

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Nagell asserted that Oswald had been interested in Russia as early as his time in Japan - no surprise there.  However he also asserted that Oswald had approached the Russian embassy in Tokyo and might have actually have gone inside and had some contact with Embassy personnel.  If that were true and Oswald mentioned he was a serviceman its quite possible he would have been talking with KGB officers or embassy types trained to interact with "walk ins".  

I don't recall Nagell ever telling Dick that there was anything more to it than that - certainly not that Oswald had been recruited as an agent of some sort by the Russians.

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That was at SIlver Lake his home in LA before Samoluk of the ARRB got there.

The stuff you are talking about Robert was supposed to have been kept in storage by his sister.

But she said that some of that was pilfered also.

Garrison once said, that Nagell was the best witness there was.

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Just now, James DiEugenio said:

That was at SIlver Lake his home in LA before Samoluk of the ARRB got there.

The stuff you are talking about Robert was supposed to have been kept in storage by his sister.

But she said that some of that was pilfered also.

Garrison once said, that Nagell was the best witness there was.

Maybe that is why he had that hand grenade thrown at him on the eve of the Shaw trial.

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35 minutes ago, James DiEugenio said:

Maybe that is why he had that hand grenade thrown at him on the eve of the Shaw trial.

Interesting, if I remember right didn't the hand grenade incident occur in Washington or New York?  In other words knowledge of what was going on stretched from New Orleans to Washington or NewYork.  As indicated by CIA meeting notes at the time?

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3 hours ago, James DiEugenio said:

The stuff you are talking about Robert was supposed to have been kept in storage by his sister.

But she said that some of that was pilfered also.

Right - one of the trunks that supposedly contained the evidence people were interested in was supposed to be a purple colored trunk which came up missing from the storage unit.

I find it interesting that we have two people showing up at Nagell's place with some b.s. story about counterfeit money, and we have the family saying things were missing from the storage locker. Then Robert's apartment was also broken into, I recall reading that somewhere.

High strangeness.

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1 hour ago, James DiEugenio said:

That was in New York Ron.  Somebody was following Nagell.  They really did not want him testifying at the Shaw trial.

Richard, yes that is how I recalled it, the purple colored trunk was gone.  And then two people show up at his house before the ARRB gets there?

Poor Nagell.

I tend to believe "where there is smoke there is fire" and one of the most convincing things, in lieu of hard evidence, are these bizarre occurrences in Nagell's life and then these things that happened even after he died. 

If Nagell is a nut like the critics suggest, he's the most powerful nut in the world: capable of reaching from beyond the grave to conjure up shenanigans. 

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Nagell's information would have forced any real investigation to look at Oswald in a much broader context and blown away the concept of him as a "lone nut".  It would also have tied him directly to anti-Castro exiles masquerading as Castro agents) who were planning an action against JFK.   Both those things would have blown the Warren Commission report out of he water.

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20 hours ago, Micah Mileto said:

I feel like that ID of Oswald was faked by Nagell by cutting it out of a published book, drawing over it with pencil, and recopying it several times.

Not an opinion you hear that often, that is for sure.

However, anything is possible. I never like to be too stringent in my beliefs because I have found in the past that I was wrong about one thing or another as new evidence came in, and think it's intellectually proper to be open to differing positions.

What specifically makes you think that Nagell faked the ID, and what published book do you think it was from? 

What makes me think that Nagell knows something, and isn't just some nut, are the unusual occurrences in his life. The people showing up at his house after he dies looking for things. The fact his son's apartment was broken into around the same time (Robert Nagell's apartment). The fact that the family said their storage locker was broken into and items were missing. That kind of thing is really strange to me and it strikes me as things the family wouldn't/didn't fabricate, and if these are real then it lends to the notion there were people willing to break the law just to find something Nagell might have had.

As with all things, the truth is somewhere in the middle. Some of the events described in TMWKTM didn't exactly happen in the way it was put forward. I've listened to some podcasts that were critical of Nagell and in one Carmine Savastano presented a compelling case that the bank robbery didn't go down as depicted in Dick Russell's book. 

I remain, as always, curious, open, critical-minded, and interested in new details. 

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On 11/26/2020 at 5:42 AM, Micah Mileto said:

I feel like that ID of Oswald was faked by Nagell by cutting it out of a published book, drawing over it with pencil, and recopying it several times.

I can't find this readily right now and my memory fails me, but I seem to recall reading something about a little-known or obscure book on the JFK case which had published in it the Hidell I.D. card. I want to say the book was written by a woman, but I just can't remember. 

I am thinking this might be the book you are saying this came from.  

EDIT: I located this detail and some posts about it ... Investigation of a Homicide by Judy Bonner. 

Edited by Richard Booth
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On 11/21/2020 at 8:21 AM, Larry Hancock said:

Nagell's information would have forced any real investigation to look at Oswald in a much broader context and blown away the concept of him as a "lone nut".  It would also have tied him directly to anti-Castro exiles masquerading as Castro agents) who were planning an action against JFK.   Both those things would have blown the Warren Commission report out of he water.

Larry, can you give a link to a way to purchase your research on Nagell? thanks.

And just to add, I first read the Nagell book when it came out, and then re-read it two or three times in the revised edition. At first I remember thinking "how can this be true?" because of some of what seemed like his more radical allegations; but the amazing thing is that as time passed, and as more and more came out in terms of research and direct documentation (by people like Larry and Jim in particular), pretty much everything Nagell claimed could either be verified or matched through interviews, documents, witnesses, and events. That book is really the most important thing yet on the assassination.

 

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