JFK Assassination: Theories & Key Facts
John Fitzgerald Kennedy is one of America’s most remembered ex-presidents. This is partly due to his young life, which tragically ended on the 22nd of November 1963. He was fatally gunned down while riding in a presidential car through the streets of Dallas, Texas.
Here are some of the interesting theories and key facts about the JFK assassination – the death of the 35th President of the United States.
Key Facts about the JFK Assassination
Here are some major facts in relation to the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy, the Thirty-Fifth President of the United States:
A Campaign Tour Led to Kennedy’s Death
On 21st November 1963, the president together with his beautiful wife (Jacqueline Kennedy) took a flight to Dallas, Texas. His visit was part of a campaign trip to the city. He was probably preparing to sweep votes for the next election. The following day, he and his entourage (including the Governor of Texas, John Connally) took a ride in a presidential convertible and drove through the streets of Dallas.
They were greeted by cheering supporters who poured themselves out to catch a glimpse of His Excellency and his beautiful wife Jacqueline. As Kennedy cruised in the open-top vehicle with his wife, at around 12:30 pm, a 24-year-old heartless American (Lee Harvey Oswald), aimed bullets at the president’s car. Kennedy was hit by 2 bullets (one to the head and the other to the neck).
The state Governor also received a bullet which ripped through his chest, ribs, lung, and leg. Harvey had fired the shots from the window of the 6th floor of a Book Depository in Texas. A few moments later (about 30 minutes), Kennedy died in Parkland Hospital with his injuries. Governor Connally miraculously survived the shooting.
Kennedy’s Killer Was Killed Two Days Later
Barely 2 hours after murdering F. Kennedy, the heartless assassin (Lee Oswald) was later fished out from his hideout and arrested. After killing Kennedy, Lee Oswald committed another fatal shooting on the same day (he shot a policeman named J. D Tippit officer at 1 pm). When he was taken into police custody, Oswald was about to be transferred to a different jail center, lo and behold, a gunman (Jack Ruby) retaliated Kennedy’s murder by fatally shooting Lee Oswald. He died in the same hospital with Kennedy. The shooting on 24th November was unintentionally broadcast live on television.
Ruby was arrested and convicted of murder. Sentenced to death by electrocution, his case was later appealed. Cancer killed him in 1967 before he could stand his next trial.
A New President Was Immediately Sworn into Office
When F. Kennedy was in office, Lyndon Johnson was the Veep. Johnson and his wife were part of the president’s convoy that rode through Dallas; they occupied a vehicle which was only 3 cars behind the presidential convertible. Following Kennedy’s confirmed death, Lyndon Johnson swore a presidential oath aboard the presidential jet, before they flew back to the capital with Kennedy’s body. He became the 36th president of the U.S.
F. Kennedy Set an Age Record with His Election and Death
At the age of 43, he was elected to the highest office. This was historical when compared to the age distribution of U.S presidents. At the time of his death in 1963, Kennedy barely spent up to 1000 days in office. Probably destined to be so, Kennedy went to his grave with another unfortunate record of being the youngest dead president.
Kennedy Was the 4th U.S President to Be Assassinated
Since 1865, and before Kennedy’s death, 3 U.S presidents have been victims of brutal assassinations while in office. Kennedy’s murder in 1963 made him the 4th and hopefully, the last president to face such gruesome deaths while serving his country. The list of killed U.S presidents is as follows: Abraham Lincoln was the first to be murdered (1865), James Abram Garfield was second (1881), William McKinley was third (1901).
Investigations and Conspiracy Theories
Kennedy’s death was received with deep shock across the nation. He was an amazing president who was deeply loved by the majority of Americans.
Flashback on Kennedy: His list of accomplishments is unimaginable, given that little time he spent in the office. Kennedy’s inaugural speech contained one of his popular quotes “don’t ask for what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country,”
More than 90 foreign dignitaries attended his funeral service on 25th November that year. When Lyndon Johnson assumed office, he set up the Warren Commission to dig into the truths surrounding Kennedy’s murder.
The results of the investigation by the Commissary officially confirmed that Lee Oswald was actually the perpetrator who personally pulled the trigger on F. Kennedy. On the 6th floor, he fired the shots through a window of the Texas Book Depository; a place he worked at for a while.
Many conspiracy theorists debunked the idea that no other person or group was involved in Kennedy’s assassination, except Lee Oswald. They opined that Lee Oswald had ties with Cuba, Russia or maybe the CIA. Kennedy’s death happened at the height of the US-Soviet Cold War.
Russia’s secret missile installations in Cuba nearly escalated into a full-blown war with the U.S, but Kennedy timely intervened. Theorists think that Kennedy’s foreign actions may have kept him in the death radar of foreign powers, including Cuba’s Fidel Castro. Though Lee Oswald was a known Soviet sympathizer, no evidence suggested he had ties with any third party.
Other theorists also seriously doubted whether the Warren Commission got reliable cooperation from federal authorities before publishing their findings. However, further re-investigations found no bases or truth in the conspiracy theories surrounding Kennedy’s murder.
Release of Classified Documents
In 2017 (after a 25-year wait period), thousands of secret files pertaining to Kennedy’s murder were released to the public by U.S National Archives. The files range from images, video, audio and more.
Conspiracists were shocked to learn no new truths about Kennedy’s murder. However, not all the documents were released. President Trump withheld hundreds of documents which were deemed capable of compromising national security. There are rumors that further documents regarding the JFK assassination will be released. Until then, that’s all for now.