Another JFK Q. She was chasing a piece of his head?

In the videos of the JFK assasination, just after the 2nd shot, the First Lady is seen crawling across the the trunk of the limo before being pushed back by a secret service guy.

I’ve always heard that she was instinctualy chasing a piece of his head that had been blown off.

Any truth to this?

Ummm…I don’t think so. My understanding is that she was hysterical and trying to get out of harm’s way. I’ve never heard your version of it before.

Thanks. You don’t “think so” and it’s your “undertstanding”

Is that a factual answer or simply your best guess?

Not being an asshole, just looking for info about whether her actions were ever fully explained. Of course I could understand the hysteria and the “flight” instinct. But I have heard/read it explained as I’ve indicated. And, in all the “docu’s” I’ve seen in the past couple of days, there’s been no mention of it.

Thanks again!

My understanding, and I don’t know where this came from, is that she was reaching back to a Secret Service Agent who was trying to mount the footstand attached to the back of the car as it accelerated.

I doubt that we will ever be able to factually verify this, unless someone can dig up an interview where Jackie talked about her motivation for climbing across the car (seems unlikely). I remember reading about the “retrieving his brains” theory too, though, as well as the “helping the SS agent onto the car” idea.

Instinctively chasing a piece of his head? What, on the thought that it could be put back if it was just blown off by a bullet? Quick, grab that hunk of brain?

I agree with Scarlett67 that it isn’t likely that a factual answer exists to this question, but the idea of “instinctively chasing” after a piece of your husband’s head when you know – at some level – that he’s been shot (and having been briefed on what to do under such a situation, as all first ladies are) just doesn’t seem terribly plausible.

It could be. You’re not exactly thinking rationally at that moment.

Years back, a friend’s mother witnessed the rather gruesome death of her husband. By the time witnesses reacher her, she had sat down and was combing through the grass looking for his eye.

According to this article, Nellie Connally, wife of Texas goevnor John Connally is quoted as saying,

I cannot find the reference right now, but I believe one of the doctors at Parkland reported Mrs. Kennedy (obviously in shock) giving him a chunk of the president’s skull or brain that she was carrying in her hand.

Supposing that JFK was shot from behind, as has been alledged in the Warren Commission report, there is no reason there should have been a chunk of anything on the trunk. But of course, that assumes you’re buying the government line.

Another theory, according to William Cooper, and supposedly visible is the Zapruder film, is the driver of the car turning around, flashing some kind of shiny object (supposedly a gun), and blowing the president’s brains out. That would explain why Jackie would flee to the back of the vehicle - further away from the driver - BUT in clearer view of a sniper.

This is not my personal opinion, and I have not been able to inspect the Zapruder film myself. Judge for yourself.

i was under the impression that she was seeking help from the agent coming toward the car.

it has been said (death of a president, manchester) that when she regained her seat she tried to hold jfk’s head as together as she could. that would lead one to believe that she tried to put things back together.

mrs onassis never said anything publicly about what happened in the car after her husband was shot. the only people i could see her talking about this to would be a spirital advisor, or rfk.

i don’t see anyone having a definate answer on this, the people involved are not able to give interviews. mrs c. may be the only one who would have any factual info and she was rather busy holding her husband together as well.

akrako1-when you said

"Supposing that JFK was shot from behind, as has been alledged in the Warren Commission report, there is no reason there should have been a chunk of anything on the trunk. But of course, that assumes you’re buying the government line.

you are perpetuating one of the mistakes of the conspiracy theorists.

This photograph:

clearly shows that a entrance wound is larger than an exit wound and that matter is indeed projected backwards from the impact area. Parts of JFK’s skull and brain would have done the same.

Zapruder film, frame-by-frame

Relevant frame to this question, #388

Whatever you do, don`t click on frame #313.

It’s more than unlikely.
She’s known to have spoken on the record about what happened on three occasions. In her testimony to the Warren Commission and in recorded interviews with William Manchester and Theodore White.
Understandably, the Commission were not inclined to subject her to more of an ordeal than necessary. I haven’t seen the transcript in question, but the Report’s summary on this point is: “Mrs. Kennedy had no recollection of climbing onto the back of the car.” (Endnoted as note 166 “E H 180 (Mrs. Kennedy).”)
The interview with Manchester was as part of the research for The Death of a President (1967; Perennial, 1988). A footnote on p161 summarises what she was able to say about the reaction:

Manchester’s interview transcript remains embargoed, along with White’s. The latter had planned to write a book on the murder, but abandoned it. In the days after her death, Manchester and White jointly issued a statement that both interviews had been placed in the care of an archive and would become available in time. But I don’t recall either the institution or the planned date of release.

(Emphasis added.) Still not read Kossy?

By the way, what the hell is going on in frame #274??

I read the same interview that minty green did, with one of the doctors who was at Parkland Hospital. Jackie opened her hand, and offered the doctor a piece of her husband’s skull that she had been clutching. Very sad.

Nellie Connally wrote at length about the matter in her book From Love Field: Our Final Hours with President John F. Kennedy:

After 40 years, akrako1 has finally solved the JFK assassination: obviously, Jackie shot him, and was trying to make her escape over the back of the car, hoping no one would notice.

I’m not sure what you are puzzled about. There is nothing unique in frame 274 that isn’t happening in the frames immediately preceding and following it. President Kennedy has been shot through the neck (sometime between frames 210 and 225), and he has brought his clenched fists up to his neck in reaction. Jackie Kennedy is leaning toward him. Governor Connally has turned to his right to look over his shoulder toward the origin of the sound of the shots, and is showing signs of reacting to being shot (see frames 224/225). In frames 225-230, the white Stetson hat that Connally was holding in his right hand flips up as the bullet enters his wrist.

Frame animations here.

whuckfistle: The President’s reaction to the throat shot. “International sign for choking” pose.

Thanks for the link, SmackFu.

Actually, you are quite mistaken about entrance and exit wounds. Anyone familiar with the subject (I’m a physician who has worked in major inner city ERs) will tell you the rule of thumb is that exit wounds are larger because the shock wave travels forward in an expanding cone from the point of initial impact, and the tissues that were damaged by the bullet itself are also pushed foreward and outward in an expanding cone that causes further damage

The stroboscopic photograph you cite is a snapshot of a very special instant of time. Entry occurs before exit, so the shockwave at the point of entry had had more time to expand than the exit point. 10 milliseconds later, the exit wound would be larger, and that would be the final state. Better yet, shoot an apple yourself, and see. If you don’t have a gun and don’t know anyone who does, even a decent BB gun or slingshot will work.

The 1975 House Select Subcommitttee on Assassinations stated in its official findings that they felt it was a conspiracy, but felt Lee Harvey Oswald based on the pictures of the entry/exit wounds, BUT those pictures have always been discredited by the eyewitnesses, including the medical staff who treated JFK at Parkland Memorial

Unfortunately, there was a significant amount of deception, which was discovered and officially documented by the 1993 Assassinations Record Review Board that was commissioned by Congress with the mandate to actually see, review, and release ALL official documents (except tax records and some that was still deemed essential to national security) and all other available evidence. They found a great deal of material that should have been the first things the Warren Commission looked at (like the detective’s notes) but which had been denied to it. A lot of evidence had been destroyed (e.g. the Secret Service motorcade report), claimed not to exist (various investigator notes) or summarized (i.e. the Warren Commission was not allowed to see many CIA document, even though ex-CIA director Dulles was on the commission)

An example of the deception: the 1978 House Select Subcommittee on the JFK Assassination claimed that all the doctors and staff agreed that the pictures and description of the and concluded the official entry and exit wounds were correct. However, they promptly sealed and classified all their materials until 2029 (50 years after the completion of the report)

The 1993 ARRB had access to all material, classified or not, and when they examined the accounts from the Parkland Memorial staff, they found that NOT ONE had agreed that the official photographs they were shown (rear entry fron exit) represented what they saw.

I suggest people interested in the subject start with the more recent government investigations and work backwards, instead of proceeding chronologically from the Warren Commission Report.

See reports at the US National Archives and Records Administration:
Kennedy Assassination Records Review Board Report
Findings of the 1976 Select Committee on Assassinations of the U.S. House of Representatives (NARA LISTS it as the report of the 1978 committee, but the report itself says it is was the report of the 1975-76 committee, whose findings were published in 76. The 1978 Committee (the committee that classified its data+ detailed findings) issued its report in 1979.

I am not a conspiracy theorist. I’m just dismayed but the clear lack of candor by the government in this matter. When a House Committee doesn’t just misreport their evidence, but blatantly says the OPPOSITE, I think it’s something that should be known to every citizen, even if I don’t have any particular interest in or theory of the JFK assassination itself.

I’m rather upset with NARA’s collection, as well. They mislink reports, misrepresent some documents (and haven’t corrected this despite years of complaints), deliberately provide an incomplete list of their JFK holdings, and offer up pre-compiled search results for JFK that are also deliberately incomplete ( It’s not my personal opinion that these lists are deliberately incomplete. Their own website says so.)