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How Did You Become Interested in the JFKA?

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I was reading a few posts made by Gene Kelly on several recent threads. He was speaking of talking to other people about the case and how to best educate them about it. That got me thinking about how I became interested in the assassination.

While I can't remember exactly how I became "serious" about studying the case, I can say it was my own doing and to this day I do not know one other person personally who has any interest in the case. I am naturally inquisitive and have a lean to the conspiratorial side anyways. When I first started researching the case, it was haunting to me for the lack of a better term. The absolute ridiculousness of the obvious coverup and the brazenness of the assassination had me hooked from the start. Like a drug addict I craved more of my newfound fix and would spend hours each day reading books, articles, and this very forum. After a while all of the research done by others dries up and you can only go so far but it leaves you wanting more. I have seen it mentioned that the important thing to figure out is the "why" of the case. While I can't disagree with that, what I am really interested in is the "who and how" and the schematics of how things went down.

Sorry for rambling a bit, but how did others become interested in the case?

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True story. 

Several years ago, a psychiatrist colleague of mine retired and referred a patient to me who was obsessed with the JFK assassination.

The guy was extremely intelligent and well read, but I suspected that he was paranoid.  So I started doing some research into the case, and I watched Oliver Stone's movie, JFK.  (At the time, I thought Oliver Stone was a quack historian-- probably based on things I had read over the years in the New York Times.) The film piqued my interest-- especially watching the Zapruder film clip during Clay Shaw's trial, and the monologues of Donald Sutherland--Mr. X.  A light bulb went on in my head.

I read somewhere that Mr. X was based on a guy named Col. L. Fletcher Prouty, and I bought a copy of Fletcher Prouty's book, The CIA, Vietnam, and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy.   The book was a shocking eye opener for me-- especially all of the material about the conduct of the CIA war in Vietnam prior to 1964.  At some point, I discovered this excellent Education Forum, and I started reading the threads and references books discussed here for a few years before finally joining the forum.

Needless to say, my patient wasn't crazy, after all.

On the flip side, I've gradually realized that our society is completely nuts... 🤥


Edited by W. Niederhut
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My father talked of the profound sadness in the UK when the news of Kennedy’s death came through on the radio, everyone remembers where they were and how they felt, my father shed tears, he was everyones hope for the future.  Another aspect was the amount JFK is referenced in film, I doubt there is a politician or celebrity mentioned more than he. I eventually heard his speech at Rice University, which really moved me, a quality to his voice or charisma. I began to listen to other speeches he made and the idealism drew me in. I started to watch documentaries, along with Oliver Stone’s JFK, which led me to reading threads on this forum for a period of about a year before requesting to join. I’ve now read 15+ books about him and the assassination. 


Edited by Chris Barnard
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I was ten years old when the assassination happened. I was sitting in my fifth grade class when, with no explanation or announcement, the radio began playing over the intercom.  The initial news was the president was shot.  At about 2:30 EST, they announced that the president was dead.  Then the principal of the school came over the intercom and sent everybody home.  Once home, all that was on the radio or tv was coverage of the assassination which continued through the Monday (school was cancelled) of the funeral.

That was quite a lot for a 10 year old to absorb.  The president was murdered and then the accused assassin was murdered.  From then on, I watched the news and read the newspaper looking for any info on the assassination.  Believe it or not, there was some skepticism in the newspaper articles regarding the official story which caused me to be continually interested in the case as I was growing up.

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Almost all the above for me.

I was 12 years old and outdoors playing basketball in our junior high P.E. class here in Pacific Grove, Ca. when a fellow student ran out from the main school buildings across the street and yelled to our teachers and us  "the president has been shot!" 

Pacific Grove is a little town ( 15 to 20,000 residents ) nestled right between Monterey and Pebble Beach on the California Coast line. 125 South of San Francisco. 

Everything froze right then and there. We were hustled back into our gym showers and told to meet in our home rooms.

Everyone was speechless. Many teachers were openly weeping.

We were soon sent home early. Before noon our time I remember.

Walking the two miles home I went through our small downtown area as I always did.  Almost no traffic or noise. Store doors were open. I heard television commentary through them.

Got home. My stay at home mom was glued to the TV. We didn't speak. I went upstairs to watch my old barely working black and white junker TV.

I watched the JFK news steady from that point until Sunday morning when I watched Jack Ruby whack Oswald...on live TV!

It was at that very point that I ( even as a 12 year old ) immediately and instinctively felt something was very, very wrong with this entire sequence of events. Watching handcuffed and escorted Oswald be led so openly right to the gun thrusting hand of Jackie Kennedy grieving and avenging, Jews have guts, you guys couldn't do it so I did Jack Ruby and hearing that shot and seeing and hearing Oswald double up and cry out made me jump up from my bed and spontaneously yell "NO WAY, NO WAY, NO WAY!" over and over again.

From that day in 1963, I always felt this sick feeling of mistrust. Mistrust of the official explanation about the JFK killing and that of Lee Harvey Oswald.

But bare existence making it life is all consuming at times and was so for me until my 30's 40's and even through my 50's. Just didn't spend much time on anything but my exhausting physical labor work.

I read what I could which wasn't much. I too listened to May Brussell who lived and broadcast right here in Carmel.

I was fascinated with the Jim Garrison investigation. Watching Johnny Carson try to destroy Garrison's credibility in front of millions of viewers of his national TV show angered me. I looked upon Jim Garrison as a truly patriotic and heroic American as well as a highly intelligent and great speaker...courageously seeking the truth, no matter if the high and mighty may fall.

But, like Ty mentioned in his thread starting post, I knew no one who shared my passion for trying to find the truth regards the JFK event or who seemed to care about it or see the importance of this effort.

Even my wife was never that interested in the subject. So, you are left alone in your curiosity and concern about who did JFK and how Jack Ruby got into that DPD building basement to do the most important criminal suspect in America's history.

Oliver Stone's film JFK was a sea change in my mind. How he was able to get that film out there into A list distribution ( loading it with so many famous actors really helped ) was an amazing achievement in my mind, even though he was the most viciously attacked film director I have ever seen, then and since.

That film got 10's of millions of Americans rethinking their previous thoughts about the JFK event and the official Warren Commission findings that a single lone Castro loving nut just got lucky with his perfect parade route turkey shoot perch location and cheapest and worst accuracy rifle whose scope was misaligned.

The theater was packed every showing for a week. I went twice and saw this in person. The audience was mesmerized the entire film. Stone put together a film that was so powerful it really effected it's viewers.

It brought back the true emotional power of the event. Something most Americans had been numbed to with help from our main stream media which until Stone's film had purposely never addressed it in any truly serious, honest and meaningful way.

Stone's JFK masterfully combined almost surreal looking film shots ( many black and white and in slow motion ) and editing and marching drum beat and other ominous sound score effects to bring viewers to the edge of their seats before the death shot sequence. I saw many film watchers jump nervously ( like I did the first viewing ) when the sound of the JFK killing shots rang out.

I know most viewers of that film in it's initial national theater run came away believing and trusting the Warren Report even less than they had before. 

Stone is a masterful film story teller. We all know this fact. His films will be viewed and studied and discussed for many many generations ahead of us. I think his JFK more than any other.

When I discovered this forum site it was manna to my lifelong interest in the JFK assassination. Still is. Many members here are heroes in my book of important "just cause" things in my life - pursuing the truth of the JFK assassination.

Edited by Joe Bauer
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Interesting thread, thanks for submitting it, Ty.

I got into it after reading Gerald Posner's "Case Closed" if you can believe it. I had seen JFK during the original theatrical release, enjoyed it and thought it had made a good case, but it didn't spark a real interest in me to learn more. I was also a subscriber to Newsweek, which had a pretty long term campaign against the film since before the release and extending years afterward.

I picked up "Case Closed" when it was a new release at the library, and it was the first book I had read on the subject. My dad had a paperback copy of Sylvan Fox's "The Unanswered Questions...", but I had never read it.

I didn't have a problem with "Case Closed" until the account of the Tippit shooting. Even then, I couldn't put my finger on what was wrong about the official account. Something just wasn't passing the smell test, so a yellow flag popped up.

At the end, I found it impossible to believe that Oswald had no motive. He denied the crimes, yet Posner's theory was that he did it because he wanted to be important and to get his place in history. How is he going to get into the history books denying the crime?

Since then, I've heard LN's theorize that Oswald was going to reveal his motives dramatically during his trial. Again, that just didn't seem plausible at all.

Well, I returned the book to the library as a newly minted skeptic, went home and read the Sylvan Fox book, and as they say, the rest is history.

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Good conversation fellas, I appreciate it and hopefully more chime in. 

Same as Joe, my wife has no interest and thinks I'm silly for wasting my time. She knows the basics and believes "something weird was going on" but has no interest in it. It reminds me of Garrisons wife in the movie always ragging on him for spending so much time with it. 

I also enjoy the stories from those of you who were alive and can remember that day. Every time I meet someone of that vintage it seems like I instinctively ask them about their experience that day. 

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A U.K. perspective here Ty.

I'm not going to profess that 9 year olds are particularly politically savvy, but I first held JFK as my hero during the Cuban Missile crisis.

I have a vivid memory of being in my junior school playground with lots of kids running around playing football, the girls with skipping ropes and I was wondering if those Russian ships were going to challenge the blockade around Cuba, and if the world was about to end.

My parents ran their own shop, which didn't close till 18:00hrs, so I had the tv to myself after school & was fully clued in to BBC news.

So forward one year & this ten year old watched the news of events in Dallas & JFK's funeral on the Monday.

Ever since JFK has meant something to me and I knew his killing was wrong, without being a ten year old conspiracy theorist.  As the years went by and America went crazy with Martin & Bobby's assassinations + the riots and Vietnam, I would latch onto any reading matter or tv docu stuff on anything Kennedy.

I've never been a particular film buff but when  Stone's JFK was released over here I just had to see it.  That began a need to find out more, slowly at first, then in 2003 I flew over to Dallas for Lancer's NID conference, talked to Dennis David about Bethesda and the casket shell games and that was it, the serious interest hasn't let up, and it shouldn't, I'm 68 now & I honestly feel John Kennedy saved my life back in '62.

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I watched JFK's news conferences with my grandmother after  school when he was president.  He was incredibly impressive to me.

I was 10 almost 11 when JFK was murdered.

I read the Life magazine articles and must have read something saying it was a conspiracy.  I was ridiculed by some in school for saying so the next year.

Later, I started to think that maybe it was just a case of a lucky shot or shots.

In the 1980s I went to Dallas for a professional conference.  There was a post registration cocktail in the Reunion? Tower.  I looked out the window and felt a sick feeling then realized I was looking down on Dealey Plaza.  Same feeling when I drove through it the first time not knowing until I saw the triple overpass that I was in the Plaza.

When the 50th anniversary of the murder came around I decided to look into it as I was traveling on a weekly basis and needed something to read.  Several of the books and the 50 Reasons for 50 Years series from Len Osanic have convinced me that more than 1 person was involved.

I then participated in a discussion on the Film discussion boards of the StL Post Dispatch, where the late Joe Williams had turned a discussion about the movie JFK into a long running discussion about the murder which reinforced my belief in the probability of conspiracy through researching claims and answers to questions on the net.


Edited by Bill Fite
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It's hard to give a concise answer Ty.  It's been a gradual thing for me.  I've mentioned some of this before on here, so may some members forgive my repetitiveness.

I just turned seven on October 30th living in Denver in the first grade.  Walked home from school for lunch, radio on, mother excited, on the phone.  Back to school, no one there except my teacher crying at her desk, go back home.  No cartoons, or Roy Rogers, all weekend, nothing to watch on TV of interest to me.  No school Monday but a funeral parade on TV watched with my parents.  Why does the horse with the empty saddle have backwards boots in the stirrups daddy?  Maybe I heard Irving, Texas on the news, where my maternal grandparents lived an it stuck in my mind as well.  But I don't remember the assassination, or the significance of it at the time.

Then nothing for years.  I never remember it being addressed, in any depth at least in high school or college.  As a high school senior in 1974 we would drive from Hurst down the new airport freeway through Irving into Dallas to get out of town.  Our turnaround was Dealy Plaza, not because of the JFKA but that was down town.  Get off Stemmons Freeway at Commerce, under the triple overpass merging left onto Main to Houston, left to Elm then left on it past the TSBD down to the triple overpass again and back onto Stemmons west bound.  I knew that's where "it" happened but the importance didn't register.  Somewhere around that time I started reading the newspaper and the Fort Worth Star Telegram would still have an article now and then, maybe something on the TV news or a magazine.  Doubt about Oswald acting alone began to creep in.  I'm sure I saw some things in the news about the House Sub Committee on Assassinations in the late 1970's.

Then nothing again to speak of until the late 1980's and a dam cracked.  Mafia did it books.  But then a re issue of Seth Kantor's The Ruby Cover Up, High Treason and Crossfire.  Which led to JFK the movie for me.  I'd never seen the Zapruder film.  It was confusing and intriguing. 

I discussed it with Mike at work who lived in Irving not too far from the Paine house, we went to Dealy Plaza and the new Sixth Floor museum.  Another friend at work, Tony rented and lived in the Paine house.  I suggested a party there on the 30th anniversary in 1993.  Where Mike and another guest escorted Tony into the living room  holding his arms and I shot him with a cap gun to rousing applause as he said "Jack!". 

Still not much more (for me) until the internet came along where I discovered a few more books like Best Evidence and Destiny Betrayed along with people like Mark Lane and Col. Fletcher Prouty.

Finally about a year before the 50th anniversary in of the assassination in 2013 I found Jeff Morley's  JFKFacts website and began to eventually comment and converse there with others like Leslie Sharp and John McAdams.  The moderator was frustrating to deal with and looking around I stumbled across this site.  After reading along a few years I joined to make a comment about the Paine house and was encouraged by another member to comment further about his article on the Vietnam war.

Which has led to profound enlightenment from multiple researchers, authors and commentators.   Thank you to the owners and moderators of the site.  This place is Historical imho.




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Verily, I was interested from the day it happened (I was in third grade), but as a youth believed the Warren Commission-CBS take. 

Saw a bootleg copy of the Z film in college, still fence-sat.

Read books, magazine articles here or there over the decades---remember, before the internet, unless you were an insider in the JFKA research community, you were basically adrift. No one to talk to. 

Discovered Mary Ferrell, James DiEugenio online eight years ago, and it has been downhill ever since. 

For me, the JFKA is important in its own right, and that's enough. A fellow human being was murdered, and that is everyone's business. 

But on top of that, it is terrific window into history and how government works. Read DiEugenio, or the books he recommends. 



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