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Dave Weigman

The search for the Weigman & Darnell films

I happen to come across this news article from about two years ago, where the late Gary Mack visited the archives of NBC5 in East Fort Worth.

The video shows the late Gary Mack of the 6th Floor Museum going into a room in a basement of NBC 5, where various boxes are standing on shelves which contain WBAP (later to become KXAS) film spools of the JFK Assassination and above all its aftermath, looking at this makes me think about all the excuses TV corporations and disinfo agents spread about the films being hard to find or ‘locked away’ when the video clearly shows that the films are just chucked in a box without any serious form of preservation and identification present.

Our quest is to find the best possible versions of the Dave Weigman and Jimmy Darnell films, they are very hard to find so it seems, and we have been trying to locate them for quite some time now.

Then UNT Libraries posts a release that they will house the complete news archive from NBC5/KXAS (formely WBAP)  from 1950 – 2012 and that the UNT Library will digitise all this material.

 

I contacted the UNT Library and conversed  with Morgan Gieringer, who told me that they had all the films except the JFK Assassination related material (why was this exception made?), since those, according to her message, went to the 6th Floor Museum (there was not a word about this in the press release).

The first thing I did when I was notified was to contact the 6th Floor Museum through Twitter and asked them if they had these films. To which I got the following reply.
twitter 6th floor museum asking where is the darnell film

 

In March 2015, Gary Mack had sent a few members of the Education Forum a PM which contained some info on these films, I quote from the PM Darren Hastings received (post #1649):

NBC owns the original Wiegman film but when producers of JFK: Death in Dealey Plaza asked them for it 12 years ago (at my request), NBC could only locate a 1960s-era video tape of it. We wound up using, I think, a 1963/1964 theatrical newsreel version held by UCLA.

NBC took the original Wiegman and Darnell films from the Dallas NBC affiliate to New York following the assassination weekend. Whether the network still has the original Darnell film is unknown, but as a former employee I know the affiliate does not have it or a copy. Nor does Jimmy Darnell.

Fortunately, a first-generation 16mm copy print was made in Dallas over that weekend and it is in the Museum’s collection; however, the Museum cannot do anything with it until copyright issues are resolved. It’ll happen, and sooner rather than later.

I contacted NBC 5 as well and Sharla Alford  assistant to the News Director/Custodian of Records got back to me promptly telling me that the University Of North Texas or the 6th Floor Museum has got all the JFK Assassination related film material from KXAS.

I replied and asked her if she could provide an inventory of the films, to which I got a reply from Brain Hocker, who is the VP of programming, research and digital media at NBC5.

He forwarded me to their online archive instead containing all the video screeners that were beamed across the nation that weekend and just after. Video, exactly the low resolution is not worth the bother, as the HD documentaries that have shown snippets of these films are in a larger resolution than what was offered to me. Furthermore the Darnell film was nowhere to be seen and the Weigman film was shown 3 times, and only once did it show the front of the TSBD.

I replied asking them (Brian Hocker at NBC5 and Megan Bryant at the 6th Floor Museum) several questions:

1/The film reels are clearly shown in the NBC5 news item, as shown above, just dormant in some boxes on a shelve in the basement at NBC5 archives, so where are they now?

2/Why are they not being digitised at ENT since everything else from that period of KXAS is?

3/Where are the original Darnell and Weigman films?

4/Can we get some high resolution still scans of the 1st gen. Darnell film that is at the 6th Floor Museum?

 

The ‘secrecy’ or better yet, the overall silence about this is deafening and looking at the video above with Gary Mack in the basement checking out the cardboard boxes holding these films one has to wonder how this stuff is being ‘treated’ for preservation.

As soon as I have the answers then so will you.

 

Who Was Prayer Man Podcast

Rob Clark did a podcast about a year ago on Prayer Man,  click to listen.

Prayer Man-Darnell-BK

Listening to it, and considering it is a year old it is missing a few bits of research. I will try and straighten a few things out if you intend to listen to it.

Prayer Man was captured by Dave Weigman and Jimmy Darnell, and not by Malcolm Couch, his swerve to the right with his camera did not go as far as the TSBD steps, but the Couch film is an asset nevertheless as it shows William Hoyt Shelley and Billy Nolan Lovelady walking away towards the parking lot behind the knoll. This is an important fact to know as it helps reduce the possible candidates of who Prayer Man actually is.

lovelady and shelly in couch-BK-

Sean Murphy deserves the large part of the credit of creating Prayer Man, but the exact moment of discovery at this time, is hard to ascertain, that is because the JFK Lancer forum where this possibly happened has gone offline, the Education Forum hopes to reinstate it later, Summer 2016, so they say. It was supposed to be sorted in November this year but they have added at least 6 months on top of it.

The real discoverer of Prayer Man is Richard E Sprague (more about him when my essay is out) who mentioned the man hidden in the shadows, when he saw Dave  Weigman’s film. He mentioned it in the late 60’s already. His correspondence with Harold Weisberg and Richard Benarbei shows this.

Rob Clark makes good mention of the basic issues such as the first day affidavits of Baker, Lovelady and Shelly which do not correspond with the Warren Commission testimony.

He then talks about Bill Shelley, and the identification of him and the pictures that are around. This is where he is wrong. His identity has  been solved with the many pictures and the statements that are available of him. Shelly also said he escorted and was at the police station giving statements with Danny Garcia Arce and Bonnie Ray Williams.

Then he makes the statement that he cannot see Billy Lovelady in Dave Weigman’s film, well here he is Rob :) And that is and Prayer Man and Billy Nolan Lovelady together.

Lovelady in Weigman

 

Regarding Will Fritz’s interrogation notes it is not that simple, one needs to add James Bookhout’s and Harry D Holmes reports and testimony into account as well, and a different picture starts to emerge (again this site will show the hows etc in due course).

Jack Dougherty is brought up as well, and rightly so, to this day a very shady character with not much info available about him. His statements were so iffy, and Roy Truly told everyone not to pay too much attention to him as he was mildly retarded, yeah sure Roy. The Warren Commission wanted to grill Jack Dougherty big time as they did not believe what he was saying, well if the W.C. wants to seriously question someone then something is really amiss……

Rob Clark brings up a valid point that all TSBD employees should have been photographed when their testimony was taken, it would have helped of course.

Then Rob cannot believe that Oswald was standing there all that time while the shooting was going on and after and not being seen or recognised or mentioned in any of the testimony. He makes a mention of Lee Harvey Oswald getting change on the 2nd floor as per Robert Groden’s story, which has been disproved the minute it came out in his book. Jim Marrs tried to flog this one as well, but there is no evidence whatsoever that this actually happened. Nor did Oswald ever make a mention of it.

Can Buell Wesley Frazier be believed asks Rob, well no……

Rob is right to doubt the bus ride, the cab ride and the timings involved since they are not possible.

Could it be a stranger he asks, which has been disproved. Nor does it hold 100 employees, 79 at the most. The Warren Commission got 73 statements in the end.

The identification of the African American guy en-profile is not Otis Williams but Carl Edward Jones. Otis Williams and his pot belly stands in the center above Maddie Reese in Altgens 6.

HSCA enlargement w names

Overall not a bad attempt at discussing this but there is a lot missing, and I mean a lot, and as mentioned I will paste it all here on this site hopefully very soon.