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Prayer Man Lee Harvey Oswald

Richard Bernabei

Richard Bernarbei (1933-1979) was a college professor at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.

Richard Bernabei (1951). Thanks to Mati Bernabei.

About a year and a half ago I was wondering whether anyone else had noticed Prayer Man in the Wiegman and/or Darnell films before Sean Murphy started his quest less than ten years ago. I was already loosely checking out where this all originated from but I could not find anything from before the millennium until I came across Bernabei’s name  while trawling through Harold Weisberg’s archive. I read his correspondence from the late 60’s, between them and Richard Sprague and almost fell off my chair and made mention of this after I regained my composure  at ROKC. There is quite a bit of correspondence in this archive.

And by chance I came across his discovery of another person on those steps besides doorway man (a.k.a. Billy Lovelady). I shall post some of these pages of his correspondence below. These pages are the first signs of discovery of Prayer Man, although he was not named as such, that credit belongs to Sean Murphy.

Knowing that Richard Bernabei’s material was held at his workplace in Kingston  I emailed Queens University in June last year and was told that the archives were not indexed nor digitised, so a dead end for me unless I or one of my fellow ROKCers made their way over there.

I left the whole thing for what it was, as I had plenty to go on until I emailed roughly 6 months ago to see if I could get a local person to investigate for me instead. Little did I know that an individual by the name of Sean Adessky had gone through all of Bernabei’s  archive a few months before and had made an index. From that index one section jumped out to me.

Folder, “Man in the TSBD Doorway” 

–      Documents relating to the individuals seen in the doorway of the TSBD at the time of the shooting.

–      Photographs, commission documents, sketches, few pages of handwritten notes.

Totalling 35 pages I was dying to get hold of all of this material, which they promptly helped me with. The whole document is more focused on Doorway Man (Billy Lovelady) but by researching it from every possible angle he also deals with Prayer Man for  about 4-5 pages. These pages are very valuable since they contain sketches made by Richard Bernabei and  diagrams as well of the people on the front steps of the Texas School Book Depository. This material is the first hard evidence of someone actually recognising a person in that shadowy area of those front steps of the Texas School Book Depository when JFK was assassinated and also actively documenting it. How he did this is a bit of an enigma, since the material of Wiegman he had in his collection there is not much to see there. Check for yourselves in the picture gallery below.

Bear in mind that at that time no one had gotten hold of the Jimmy Darnell film where Prayer Man is seen a lot clearer than in the Dave Wiegman film. The other sources, regarding this particular segment of the case, Bernabei had were Altgens 6 and the Hughes film.

Great stuff indeed, not just from a find p.o.v. but also what else he wrote inside that document. He followed the same ‘tactic’ Sean Murphy and Richard Hocking used. Not only did he study the film and photo material but he also looked at all the available testimonies and brought Oswald’s interrogations and whereabouts and TSBD employees Carolyn Arnold and Victoria Adams into the fold. Furthermore I plaster some scans of the images he had during his research. Two copies of Altgens 6, Willis 4, 8 & 10, Wiegman, Towner and Bell.

The letter below is from Richard E. Sprague who writes in good detail about Wiegman and his film to Richard Bernarbei.

  • Sprague managed to buy a copy of the film on 35 mm, where this film is, is not known at this time. He also mentions that he has clipped some of the frames out of his film, therefor the possibility exists that the film was kept in a cut up state.
  • He explains the many generations of the film.
  • Wiegman had not seen his film at the time of their telephone interview.

The large format negatives Sprague is talking about are at the National Archives in Washington, we at ROKC managed to get copies of these.

And then the trail went dead, for almost 40 years………………..why?

 

Addendum Dec 30th 2016:

Mati Bernabei (Richard’s daughter) contacted me through Facebook and shared the following info with me, which she has allowed me to share:

She was 14 years old when he died in 1979. He was very unwell the last two years due to alcohol related deterioration of body and mind.

” I knew that he was deeply interested in JFK, I didn’t understand what he was working on. I was too young. Close to the time of his death (when he, and everyone, understood that his death was imminent), my mother and other friends of his convinced him to donate his JFK files to the Archives at Queen’s University. They didn’t want the work to be lost”

“. I’ve always imagined that his work would remain in dusty boxes in the Archives forever, so I am truly delighted that you found it useful . My father was an artist, heart and soul (before academia, he studied art), hence his drawings, and his understanding of visual perspective, light and shadow, etc. I’m sure he would be deeply gratified that his work is still of interest in some way. Very interesting for me to read your analysis too! Thank you!”

“When looking for the photo I reread a short bio of my father that my mom wrote in the 1990s when she doing a hobby genealogy project (for my sister and I). That mentions the donation to the archives, and I remembered more details. My father was a true mess in the last two years of his life. He had a heart murmur due to childhood rheumatic fever, thus the collapse of his body due to chain smoking and alcohol was accelerated. In June of 1979 my uncle (his brother) came to visit — by that time it was clear that there was no turning back – organ failure was occurring, and father would die soon (he died 2 months later). At that time my uncle and my mom convinced Pa to donate the JFK material. My father had already destroyed much of his artwork, in a fit of self loathing, I think. So, my mom and uncle rightly worried that he might do the same with his JFK documents.”

“My father’s struggles were obvious to people who knew him in the last few years, thus there was no need or purpose in in trying to create a facade. And, he talked and wrote about too. He was a kind, loving, tragically self-destructive person in those last years.”

*****

 

Special thanks to Heather Home and Susan Office at Queens University.

Mati Bernabei for the portrait and the additional info.

And many thanks as well to Francesca Brzezicki for making the Bernabei correspondence and photo scans for me.

Wiegman scans by ROKC from the Richard E. Sprague archive at the National Archives in Wa.

Roy Truly interview 1964

This Roy Truly interview was done by Will Lang for Dolores Kraich and sent to Holland McCombs, who was bureau chief for TIME and LIFE magazine in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, and Dallas.

It deals with Truly’s recollections of Oswald’s job application, the day of the assassination, the second floor lunch room encounter, but also delves into the whole Doorway man matter.

Any nuggets?

A few:

  • Truly, on page 2 describes Oswald as an ‘undetected paranoiac’
  • Page 3,  he states that Oswald could not have known about the motorcade passing by the TSBD until 72 hrs beforehand. And starts to speculate about and eventually condemns Oswald heavily “But as I suppose we all now realize, he had to shoot somebody or do something big. He probably would have shot anybody who was big enough if he had the chance or could make the chance”.
  • Page 4 digs into the doorway-man Lovelady vs Oswald saga.
  • Page 5, he discusses the day JFK got shot. He mentions Lovelady and being outside on the steps, and himself standing in front of those steps near the curb of Elm.  What is downright rubbish is his description of a wave of people making their way back and that Baker had to push his way though the crowd. The Couch and Darnell films show that Baker had a clear run towards the TSBD building.
  • On page 8 he contradicts himself regarding this wave of people. “there were not so many people out there in front of this building when the President’s car passed here”
  • Page 9 shows that the author(s) forwarded a copy to Hugh Aynesworth in 1967.

 

Overall a well rehearsed interview, a puff piece by the looks of it, but Truly makes the same mistake again like he did with his statements, testimony and newspaper reports, he always adds info that makes one question his claims.

 

 

Prayer Man on Dutch TV and Radio-1

Monday the 14th I joined Monique Sleiderink  of TV Oost (that’s the local Dutch TV channel for the East of the country) for an interview about Prayer Man. I had a great time, simple as that. Hope to join them again when the book is out. There is a nice page made up on RTV Oost’s website. In Chrome right click and choose translate. Here are some pictures taken during the TV show, one with Monique outside in the corridor and some screenshots of the video itself.

And on the 22nd I did an interview for KRO/NCRV’s Groot Op 5.  They had picked up on my TV oost appearance and wanted to do an interview the next day, but I was travelling back then, so we postponed until the 22nd. Again a short interview about 4 minutes which was great to do.

Both interviews have taught me a bit about trying to get the message across in a short amount of time, as if I were to put the evidence forward I would need at least 4 hours :-)

I have been given both recordings and I shall supply the videos with subtitles and upload to YouTube in due time.

November updates

Hi all,

first this site and a few others got hacked and had a spam bot installed that sent millions of spam mails. Google blacklisted the site, but has all been rectified and given a clean state of health and is a lot more secure now.

Then there was the one day seminar in London, we had 15 souls downstairs at The Greene Man pub near Great Portland St. Dealey Plaza UK held a one day seminar where I did a talk about the 2nd floor encounter and also talked about Oswald’s interrogations, which is my next essay. I hope to have it finished before year’s end. Don’t hold me to it tho ;).

We followed with a screening of A Coup In Camelot. We managed to watch it on a 65″ 4K screen. Everyone enjoyed watching the documentary a lot. I myself enjoyed the Barry Ernest and Vince Palamara sections, even though I am well familiar with their work, it was good to see their research presented in this excellent documentary.

 

Barry Ernest in A Coup In Camelot. Click to enlarge.

Barry Keane did a fitting tribute to J.F.K. at the very end, like he always does every year. After which half of us went back into the pub since it had been such an enjoyable event. Talks about Canterbury have already started and we will try and get a killer line-up for this event. 2.5 days of constant yapping about all types of aspects of the JFK Assassination, what’s not to love :)

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Out of the blue Stu Wexler told me that I was being presented with an award at the Mary Ferrell awards at the JFK Lancer conference in Dallas last weekend.

I have been given the Mary Ferrell New Frontier Award 2016 at the JFK Lancer Conference for my Anatomy essay. The Award is for new research in respect to my work on further exploring the official story of the Oswald encounter.  The Pioneer awards are intended to recognise and honour new research in a variety of fields. This year Bill Simpich, Malcolm Blunt and a few others received the awards along with me.

At first my reply to Stu was “yeah right”, but I was quickly convinced otherwise.

I am humbled by this Award and have to thank the JFK Lancer team, for the great honour of this accolade and since it is only the first piece of four, it is a major stimulant to continue.

Thank you!

The article is due a substantial update so watch this space.

 

The Death Of Prayer Woman part-2

So the lads have been back at it again, this time using the Wiegman film. After being obliterated by my previous post Duncan MacRae, Carig Lamson and Brian Doyle aka as Ralph Yates on Amazon and Albert Doyle (the dead father’s account) thought they’d give their verbal excrement technique another go.

Let’s compare pix shall we? In this case size does matter!

The Chris Davidson GIF, from Dave Wiegman stills. Source: Death In Dealey Plaza. Resolution of this DVD 768 x 576 px.  Let’s take a look at a sample of this in a 1920 x 1080 px window. I am doing this for comparison reasons. This is not the exact same frame. This is a screen grab I managed to get myself from the DVD in question.

0-deathindealeyplaza

Click pic to enlarge.

The real source for this version of the Wiegman film is a theatrical newsreel version from 1964 from UCLA, the makers of the Death In Dealey Plaza would probably have a 5th generation copy to make their dupes from so that makes this a 6th or even a 7th generation, since their tapes were transferred to DVD and the screen shots used for the GIF are then  8th generation repros.
1st gen: Wiegman original
2nd gen enlargement to 35mm
3rd gen postive film sold on to other companies such as Hearst and UCLA
4th gen negative made from positive
5th gen makers of DIDP get a copy.
6th transfer to tape then the question is does it go from tape to DVD or from the dupe they got from UCLA. My guess is the former rather than the latter since there is not a huge difference in resolution and this happened more than ten years ago (the dvd rel. that is)
So the DVD would be the 7th gen.
The CD Gif the 8th
The Prayer Woman image the 9th!

Now we take the CD Gif and place it in the same window, yes that is how big the original is. Chris rotated the pic to make it line up with the other shot. It has had some post production as the contrast has been increased and the photo appears to be lighter. But size-wise it is pretty much the same as my copy.

1-true-size-cd-gif

Click pic to enlarge.

Now I post MacRae’s PW image next to the same GIF. And also inserted a 400 DPI version of the same CD GIF next to it.

2-macraes-growths

Click pic. to enlarge.

 

 

So an 8th generations deep reproduction of an image, in its size as shown in the photograph above is being drastically cropped, “enhanced” and manipulated and becomes the actual 9th generation copy.

From this so called enhancement we can conclude the following:

  1. It’s size has been increased significantly even tho the resolution of the enlargement has been set back at 72 dpi.
  2. Increase of contrast and darkened overall
  3. The top of Prayer Man’s head has been cropped off.
  4. The appearance of wheel barrow man, if Prayer Man is Prayer Woman then surely MacRae, Lamson and Doyle can explain the sudden appearance of wheel barrow man. Not that anyone will believe this to be someone, but this points at things are being ‘made to appear’ inside that picture due to its excessive enlargement and post-production.
Wheel barrow man!. Click pic. to enlarge.

Wheel barrow man!. Click pic. to enlarge.

 

Now I place the Sprague neg. (No. 3) in there, the negs that we scanned in with a flatbed scanner have a much higher resolution than anything else publicly available and shown by any photographic researcher. This is not the exact frame as the one inside the CD GIF (No. 1) but it is very close. And the MacRae interpretation at No. 2.

The generations for this particular shot would be:

1st gen: Wiegman original.
2nd gen enlargement to 35mm.
3rd gen postive film sold on to other companies such as Hearst and UCLA.
4th gen negative made from positive.
5th gen is the positive made from that negative sold to Sprague.
6th gen are the Sprague negs.
7th gen the scans of which you see the one on the right (No. 3). They are also reproductions from large format negatives.
Source: letter from Richard E. Sprague.

6-comprison

Click pic. to enlarge

In all honesty the area that has been enlarged and manipulated by them is even smaller than shown with the No. 1 pic since they cropped the top of his head off.

I have left this image untouched besides drawing a marquee and applying auto levels to bring Prayer Man out a little more out of the darkness. The dust, even the hairs and scratches are visible on it and even that is enough to kill off the glasses, the bag, the teacup (nice touch Dunc’ but that’s stretching things a little too far….) and all the other make believe hooey advocated by Doyle and MacRae. But here it is at its best. Mind you that these are flatbed scans and we are in the process of getting these negs properly scanned in. And I for one cannot wait to show them!

MacRae and Lamson provide absolutely no evidence of how these images have come about, they are not able to reproduce any of it on any other Wiegman frame and they shroud their work in secrecy instead. Doyle just whimpers on like an unruly child, but it’s his crazy deluded headset that is most worrying, his Fetzerian remarks which are interlaced with Cinque style delusions are to be monitored closely.

 

446-doyle-padded-cell

447-doyle-padded-cell-2

460-doyle-padded-cell-3

461-doyle-padded-cell-4

462-doyle-padded-cell-5

463-doyle-padded-cell-6

Skillful photo experts, something Doyle keeps coming up with as support for his delusions, would not go along with his plan at all in the first place. They’d say GTFO and get me the best copy available, instead of messing about with 5th-9th generations down. So how about it Doyle? While you were taking a selfie in front of the TSBD did you bother to go inside and ask for the first generation copy of the Darnell film? Of course you did not……….

They can only debate fuzzy pictures, since they cannot refute the other mountain of evidence that places Oswald on the first floor and outside on the landing while JFK was blasted away.

Finally make up your own mind about this, but I know who my money is on and he ain’t a she.

By Stan Dane.

By Stan Dane.

Anatomy of the second floor lunch room encounter.

Anatomy of the second floor lunch room encounter.

 

Last updated Sept 9th 2017

This essay got too big for its own good, more than 23,000 words which resulted in the blog software unable to cope and ended up crashing numerous times.

Thanks to Bernard Wilds webmaster of DPUK we now have a PDF of the Anatomy of the second floor lunch room encounter available, at 134 pages a light read ;)

Update Dec 6th 2016: this article has been awarded the Mary Ferrell and JFK Lancer New Frontier Award in late November.

 

Credit: Stan Dane.

Credit: Stan Dane.

Credit: Stan Dane.

Billy Lovelady was not standing on the top of the steps

Lately a few individuals have tried to claim that Prayer Man was very short and they used ‘calculations’ and the ‘fact’ that Lovelady was standing on the landing when Dave Wiegman filmed the front of the TSBD. They  used Lovelady’s height to ‘prove’ that Prayer Man (read: Lee Harvey Oswald) was way shorter and could not possibly be Oswald.

Let’s debunk this shall we?

All types of faulty and/or made-up calculations and lines drawn on a picture were presented as analytical research, none of which was supported by any type of evidence. No one bothered to mention what camera Wiegman was using, nor could any one present an exact location as to where Wiegman was filming from, add on that all this happened while the vehicle he was standing in was moving which makes it even more difficult to ascertain Wiegman’s position.

In short: utter junk science that no one else than the believers Richard Gilbride and Albert Doyle seemed to subscribe to and they ended up trolling a few forums with their science.

While going through the photos of the Wiegman film I came across a neat little find two days ago, something that I was only able to do so as we managed to get a high resolution scan from the NARA archives in the Richard E. Sprague collection.

The find was Bill Shelley (underneath No.3), with Prayer Man being No. 1 and Billy Lovelady No. 2. This pic. is from the second segment Wiegman filmed of the front of the TSBD and it also shows that Lovelady has stepped down (compared to his position in the first segment) and it also shows that Shelley has moved slightly more to the left (he is now behind Otis Williams whereas he is more to the right of him in the first segment, see the 4th photograph below). This is a good indicator that while the shots were fired they already made a move to go down and check out what was going on. The two Gerda Dunckel GIFs show that Shelley and Lovelady had left the steps and made their way to the rail road yard further west of the building within seconds after. I go in great detail about this  HERE.

Shelly was standing on the top of the landing. Whereas Lovelady was not, as he stated in 1964 in an article by Dom Bonafede “I was standing on the first step” 

q Prayer Man, Billy Lovelady and Bill Shelley in the Wiegman film. Click pic to enlarge.

Lovelady had a very curious attitude as he is seen in much lower on the steps and to the left, behind Roy Lewis/Carl Edward Jones in the Hughes film. This is while the motorcade is turning on to Elm St.

Lovelady in the Robert Hughes film. Click pic. to enlarge.

Altgens 6 shows that Lovelady moved up and further to the right, his distance is further away from Lewis/Jones.

Billy Lovelady in Altgens 6, click pic. to enlarge

 

Albert Doyle and Richard Gilbride have been claiming, that Prayer Man is too short to be Oswald. This of course is not supported by anything but made-up calculations and picking up pseudo science from other peeps such as Drew Phipps and presenting pix with neat little lines and numbers that basically amount to nothing. Not one person at the forums this bunk was posted at supported any of it.

 

The kicker is that Lovelady was not standing on the top landing, because he is seen leaning against the railing in the first segment of the Wiegman film. Check his body posture compared to all other individuals on  those steps, they are all standing straight, even though Lovelady is following the events happening down Elm St and his body is turned into that direction his body posture shows he is leaning. Take a look at the 2nd segment photo and you see that Lovelady is standing straight on the steps, as he is making a move going downwards.

 

 

Lovelady leaning in Wiegman, click pic. to enlarge.

Lovelady stepping down, click pic. to enlarge.

The issue with that is you cannot lean against the railing while standing on the top landing!

See for yourself in the photograph below. The railing is mounted flush on the vertical part of the last step leading to the landing, the bar of the railing would be slightly in front of the landing.  The deniers will claim that it is still possible, yet it would be so awkward and since Lovelady’s posture doesn’t ascribe to that it is safe to say that Lovelady from standing just behind Roy Lewis / Carl Edward Jones moved upward and to the right to the 5th or the 6th step of the TSBD stairs.

 

 

Front steps TSBD

 

But why do we not throw something valuable on top and that is a stamenet by Lovelady himself in May 64 published in the NYHT by Dom Bonafede.

 

The lens Wiegman used was a wide angle lens, this creates distortions and Lovelady while moving downward as in the 2nd segment would appear slightly taller than Prayer Man since he is, by that time, standing more forward.

But what is more important is that Prayer Man is of roughly the same height as Lovelady and THAT makes Prayer Man, besides the enormous amount of other evidence a prime candidate to be Lee Harvey Oswald.

No stranger

No woman

No other TSBD worker has been identified for that position.

Oswald himself said: ”Out with Bill Shelley, in front”.

No dwarf either.

Brian Doyle and Richard Gilbride should get back to the drawing board and come up with their next scheme as this one, like their previous ones is dead in the water.

 

***

 

Then there is another issue as to what Prayer Man was doing with the shiny object he is bring towards his face.

On my calibrated screen (and if you do not have one you may experience issues seeing this clearly as I do) the Wiegman film shows he using one hand (his right) to bring iot towards his mouth. This is not a camera! But more than likely the bottle that was photographed in Prayer Man’s position after the deed.

Close-ups of Robin Unger’s gif.

 

Bluntly Speaking With Bart Kamp

Lone Gunman Podcast 115 featuring yours truly and the Malcolm Blunt interview from the Dealey Plaza Uk seminar in Canterbury on April 24th.

Rob Clark and I talk about Prayer Man, Joe Molina, Pauline Sanders, Mrs Robert Reid, Otis Williams, Marrion Baker and of course Roy Truly.

HERE