There Was No Second Shooter on the Grassy Knoll

Mysteries, Solved and Unsolved

To the Editor:

Chris Nashawaty’s review of Jack Goldsmith’s “In Hoffa’s Shadow: A Stepfather, a Disappearance in Detroit, and My Search for the Truth” (Oct. 27) comments that the disappearance of Jimmy Hoffa “remains one of the most notorious unsolved mysteries of the 20th century, along with the whereabouts of Amelia Earhart and the identity of the so-called second shooter on the grassy knoll.”

This is a serious disservice to history. As the journalist who interviewed the pathologists who performed the autopsy on President John F. Kennedy for an exclusive report published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in May 1992, I can definitively state that there was no second shooter from the grassy knoll or anywhere else.

The pathologists proved at the autopsy table that the abrasion collar at the back of Kennedy’s neck and the beveling of his skull provided irrefutable evidence that the bullets traveled from rear to front, meaning that there was only one shooter — Lee Harvey Oswald.

The New York Times commended this reporting in a Page 1 article published on May 20, 1992, and reinforced the evidence with an editorial. “Two shots from the rear,” the Times editorial concluded. “The Journal of the American Medical Association has performed a service for reasonable people and reason. … This basic physical evidence survives and, to all those willing to listen, it offers proof against paranoia.”

Dennis L. Breo
New Smyrna Beach, Fla.

Clarence Thomas

To the Editor:

Orlando Patterson’s review of Corey Robin’s argument against Clarence Thomas’s fundamental position in “The Enigma of Clarence Thomas” (Oct. 20) displays once again how the liberals’ approach to the poor triggers opposition.

Too often the sentiment behind it is that we must “help” them or “atone” for what has happened to them. Thomas says that such approaches are demeaning and worsen their condition. I believe that a proper approach would be to improve our infrastructure and educational system and provide the “beneficiaries” with the opportunity to contribute to meeting the needs of society.

C. Richard Attanasio
Cortlandt Manor, N.Y.


To the Editor:

Sharon Weinberger’s review of Stephen Kinzer’s “Poisoner in Chief: Sidney Gottlieb and the C.I.A. Search for Mind Control” (Oct. 20) states that Frank Olson “jumped, or was possibly pushed, out of a hotel room window in New York in 1953.” According to H.P. Albarelli Jr.’s book “A Terrible Mistake: The Murder of Frank Olson and the C.I.A.’s Secret Cold War Experiments,” Olson was in fact pushed. Interestingly, Weinberger mentions the docudrama “Wormwood,” but doesn’t mention Albarelli’s book.

Carl Scariati
Westfield, N.J.


A biographical note on Oct. 27 with the Otherworldly column misstated the title of a short story written by the columnist, Amal El-Mohtar. It is “Seasons of Glass and Iron,” not “Seasons of Glass and Wine.”

The True Crime roundup on Oct. 27 misstated the age of Ramona Wilson, an Indigenous girl who vanished in British Columbia in 1994 and whose remains were found a year later. She was 16 at the time of her disappearance, not 15.

The Inside the List column last Sunday misstated the best-seller ranking of “Olive, Again,” by Elizabeth Strout, on the hardcover fiction list. It debuted at No. 6, not No. 4.

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