Secret Service Agents from the JFK/LBJ era: who is still alive, who died, who I interviewed

IN RESPONSE TO THIS E-MAIL INQUIRY 3/23/18:

“Mr. Palamara,

My name is A…S…, I am the Historian at Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park. I wanted to chat with you regarding your interviews with former Secret Service Agents during the Johnson Administration. We are in the process of restoring the interior of the Command Post on the LBJ Ranch and we wanted to capture oral histories with agents who are still alive, naturally. I am making up a list based off some images from the LBJ Library, but I was wondering if you maintained contact with any agents who served during the Kennedy/Johnson time period. Don Brett actually just moved down here from Florida within the last year, I hope to meet with him soon. I do know Jerry McKinney, Clint Hill, Michael Shannon, Ernie Olsson, Woody Taylor, Ron Pontius, Charles Marass and William Duncan are all still alive. Thank you for you assistance, I hope to hear from you soon.
Sincerely,

A… S…

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Park Historian/Resource Specialist

Oral Historian

“A man without a vote, is a man without protection.” President Lyndon B. Johnson

Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park

P.O. Box 329

100 E. Ladybird Lane

Johnson City, TX 78636

Our conservation must be not just the classic conservation of protection and development, but a creative conservation of restoration and innovation. Its concern is not with nature alone, but with the total relation between man and the world around him.  Lyndon B. Johnson

 


MY RESPONSE:

Mr. A…,
Thank you for writing. Yes, I have interviewed and corresponded with quite a few former Secret Service agents, especially during the JFK and LBJ years, particularly in the years 1992-2006. I am the author of four books, three of which pertain to the Secret Service (the fourth one, WHO’S WHO IN THE SECRET SERVICE, is coming out 9/1/18). I have appeared on The History Channel, C-SPAN and on the DVD/ BLU RAY A COUP IN CAMELOT, but I digress.
Two caveats: 1) quite a few of these men have since passed away (although, of course, I have them archived in my books and so forth) and 2) being a harsh critic of their performance on 11/22/63 has not endeared me to these agents, to put it mildly. For the most part, the agents were (surprisingly) cooperative and borderline amiable, but I have become persona non grata since former JFK/LBJ era agents Clint Hill and Gerald Blaine both came out with their best-selling books (one for Blaine, three for Hill, all with the same female co-author who is now Hill’s companion). In fact, both men were retired and (then) in their mid-seventies and had 0.0 notion of writing a book or books…until I contacted Hill with essentially a “cliff notes” version of my as-yet-unpublished first book which was cause for great consternation, as I was calling out their beloved agency for gross negligence in the death of President Kennedy. Unbeknownst to myself at the time, Blaine and Hill were in constant communication (in person and via the phone & internet), as they knew each other since serving in the Denver field office in the late 1950’s!
Hill and Blaine went on to mention myself and my work—twice—-on television: C-SPAN, in interviews with CEO Brian Lamb. Once all this came about, I was officially persona non grata, especially when my first book finally came out for the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination in 2013, not to mention my other books.
All that in proper focus, here is who I interviewed/ contacted/ corresponded with just from the (JFK) LBJ era (1961-1969; LBJ as VP and President [NOTE: Most, but not all, White House Detail. May have protected LBJ as VP, President either permanently or part-time: field office, temp assignment]):
 

1) SAIC and Chief James Rowley, 9/27/92; deceased 11/1/92;

2) SAIC Gerald Behn, three times on 9/27/92; deceased 4/21/93; 

3) Chief Inspector Michael Torina, 1997 and 2004; deceased 8/21/2008;

4) Shift Leader Art Godfrey, twice in 1996 + 1997; deceased 5/12/2002;

5) ASAIC, SAIC and Assistant Director Rufus Youngblood, 1992 and 1994; deceased 10/2/1996; author of a book 20 YEARS IN THE SECRET SERVICE (1973; new edition coming out 5/31/18 with a new Foreword by Clint Hill);

6) SAIC (later, Director) Stu Knight, 1992 and 1994; deceased 9/7/2009;

7) Shift Leader, SAIC, Assistant Director Thomas “Lem” Johns, 2004; deceased 5/10/2014; Lem and his wife were involved in the 2013 DVD Lem Johns: Secret Service Man ;

8) Shift Leader Jerry Kivett, 1997, 2004 and 2006; deceased 6/26/2010did a Sixth Floor Museum oral history;

9) Richard E. Johnsen, 9/27/92; deceased 10/2/2010;

10) Joseph Paolella, 1997 and 2003; deceased 9/2017appeared in the book THE DARK SIDE OF CAMELOT and ABC Special;

11) Robert Lilley, 1992, 1996, and 2004; deceased 2/19/2016;

12) ASAIC and Inspector Floyd Boring, 1993, 1994 and 1997; deceased 2/1/2008;

13) Jerry Parr (later, SAIC Carter-Reagan era and Assistant Director), 1995; deceased 10/9/2015; author of a book IN THE SECRET SERVICE (2013);

14) Dale Keaner, 2005; deceased 4/20/2015;

15) Ed Morey, 2005; deceased 11/7/2014;

16) Don Lawton, 1995 and 1997; deceased 4/5/2013;

17) Jack Ready, 2005; deceased 2/24/2014;

18) John Joe Howlett, 1997; deceased 10/10/2013;

19) P. Hamilton Brown, 1992; deceased 9/2/2013;

20) Talmadge Bailey, 1997 and 2004; deceased 3/11/2011;

21) Frank Stoner, 2004-2005; deceased 2/15/2009;

22) Winston Gintz, 2004; deceased 7/21/2008;

23) Vince Mroz, 2003; deceased 7/22/2008- the day after Gintz, above;

24) SAIC of PRS Robert Bouck, 1992; deceased 4/27/2008;

25) Lynn Meredith, 2004-2005; deceased 4/17/2008;

26) Special Officer Stanley Galup, 2003; deceased 7/15/2007;

27) Uniformed Division John Norris, 1994; deceased 4/30/2003;

28) Assistant Treasury Secretary G. d’Andelot “Don” Belin, 1997; deceased 4/15/2003;

29) Sam Kinney, 1992, 1994; deceased 7/21/97;

30) Dallas Office SAIC Forrest Sorrels, 1992; deceased November 1993;

31) Dallas Office Robert Steuart, 1992 and 1993; deceased 12/11/99;

Agents I interviewed/ contacted/ corresponded with just from the (JFK) LBJ era (1961-1969; LBJ as VP and President) WHO ARE STILL ALIVE (I THINK):

 32) Walt Coughlin, 2003-2005; from Dallas, TX; did an oral history for the Sixth Floor Museum recently (on You Tube);

33) Sam Sulliman, 2003; has Atzheimers; from PA;

34) Ernest Olsson, 2004 [spoke briefly; not cooperative; didn’t like to talk about those days];

35) William “Tim” McIntyre, 2005; from California; appeared in the book THE DARK SIDE OF CAMELOT and ABC Special;

36) Clint Hill, 2005; from VA, now lives in San Francisco; has his own website and three books;appeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary, etc.;

37) Ronald Pontius, e-mail 2000; lives in San Clemente, CA; appeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary;

38) Jim Goodenough, 2004; from Toledo, Ohio;

39) Charles Marass, 2003; from Gettysburg, PA;

40) Gerald Blaine, 2004-2005; from Colorado; author of THE KENNEDY DETAIL; appeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary; appears on You Tube re: C-SPAN and Sixth Floor Museum appearances, etc.;

41) Ken Giannoules, 2005 [spoke briefly; not cooperative]; did an oral history for the Sixth Floor Museum recently (on You Tube);

42) Bill Livingood, 1992 and 1997; lives in VA; later the Sgt at Arms for the House of Representatives, Clinton-Obama era!

43) Gerald O’Rourke, 2005; from Colorado;

44) Winston Lawson, 1992 and 2003; from VA; appeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary;

45) Frank Yeager, 2003 and 2004; from Kentucky;

46) Gerald Bechtle, 1997; from VA;

47) Abraham Bolden, 1993-present; author of THE ECHO FROM DEALEY PLAZA; has own Facebook page;

48) Chuck Zboril, 1995; from Chicago AND Florida; not friendly now- gave my first book a bad review on Amazon 🙂

49) Radford Jones, 2003; from Michigan; gave interview on You Tube recently; also did a Sixth Floor oral history;

50) Dale Wunderlich, 1999 and 2009; did a Sixth Floor oral history;

51) Bill Carter, 2007; author of GET CARTER;

52) Darwin Horn, 2003-2004; author of DAR’S STORY;

53) Frank Slocum, 2004; from Hawaii;

54) Larry Newman, 2004; appeared in the book THE DARK SIDE OF CAMELOT and ABC Special;

55) Tony Sherman, 2004; appeared in the book THE DARK SIDE OF CAMELOT and ABC Special;

56) Ken Wiesman, e-mail 2000; from Texas;

57) White House Detail (female) Secretary Eve Dempsher, 2003; from Maryland;

Agents I did not contact because they died before I had a chance to contact them (I was born in 1966 and didn’t begin to interview agents until 1991/1992)

58) Thomas B. Shipman, deceased 10/14/63; I did interview family

59) ASAIC and Assistant Director Roy Kellerman, deceased 3/22/84; I did interview family

60) William Greer, deceased 2/23/85; I did interview family

61) Assistant Chief Paul Paterni, deceased 2/5/84; I did interview a friend

62) Chief U.E. Baughman, deceased 11/6/78;

63) Coin Hauk, deceased 3/28/2017;

64) Roger Warner, deceased 6/4/2016;

65) Forrest Guthrie, deceased 4/25/2016; author of SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE (2014);

66) William H. Patterson, deceased 12/3/2006;

67) Robert Kollar, deceased 11/17/2014;

68) John Gleason, deceased 9/10/2014;

69) Frank Hancock, deceased 2/6/2014;

70) David Grant, CLINT HILL’S BROTHER-IN-LAW!; deceased 12/28/2013; UK interview on You Tubeappeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary;

71) Louis Mayo, deceased 5/11/2013;

72) Jack Walsh, deceased January 2012;

73) George Chaney, deceased 8/14/2011;

74) George Hickey, Jr., deceased 2011 [I left him alone because a) he was ill and b) he was tormented by the book MORTAL ERROR which alleged that he “accidentally” fired the fatal shot that killed JFK!];

75) Robert Faison, deceased 6/28/2011;

76) John Joseph Lardner, deceased 11/19/2010;

77) Glen Weaver, deceased 4/4/2010;

78) Jim Jeffries, deceased 1/18/2009;

79) Bob Foster, deceased 6/18/2008;

80) James “Mike” Mastrovito, deceased 11/24/2006; I did interview family;

81) Dick Metzinger, deceased 2006; I did interview family-daughter Julie;

31195_1412460427058_3309553_n

82) Lawrence Hess, deceased 11/5/2006;

83) Andy Berger, deceased 6/22/2006;

84) Arthur Blake, deceased 4/7/2006;

85) Paul Burns, deceased 4/5/2005;

86) John Paul Jones, deceased March 2004;

87) Treasury Secretary C. Douglas Dillon, deceased 1/10/2003;

88) Bill Bacherman, deceased 5/31/2002;

89) Head of Uniformed Division Ralph Stover, deceased 1/24/2002;

90) Elmer Moore, deceased 12/4/2001;

91) Chief Inspector Jackson Krill, deceased 1/20/2000;

92) Dennis Halterman, deceased 1988; I did interview family;

93) Howard Anderson, deceased;

94) Inspector Burrill Peterson, deceased 11/6/95;

95) PRS agent Walter Pine, deceased;

96) PRS agent Elliot Thacker, deceased;

97) PRS agent Walter Young, deceased 1996;

98) Henry Rybka, deceased 12/25/75;

99) Shift Leader Stu Stout, deceased December 1974; I did interview family;

100) Shift Leader Emory Roberts, deceased 10/8/73;

101) PRS agent Glen Bennett, deceased 4/4/94;

102) Andy Hutch, deceased 1991;

103) Harvey Henderson, deceased January 1994;

104) John J. “Muggsy” O’Leary, deceased December 1975;

105) Lubert “Bert” de Freese, deceased 1991;

106) Ned Hall II, deceased 11/26/98; I did interview family;

107) Bill Payne, deceased;

108) Charlie Kunkel, deceased 6/27/92;

109) Robert Jamison, deceased;

110) PRS agent Elmer Lawrence, deceased;

111) SAIC of Forgery J. Leroy Lewis, deceased;

112) Inspector Gerard McCann, deceased;

113) Jack Parker, deceased;

114) White House Detail Clerk Walter Blaschak, deceased;

115) Inspector Thomas Kelley, deceased;

116) Clarence Knetsch, deceased;

117) Paul Doster, deceased 1987;

118) John Marshall, deceased;

119) Jerry Dolan, deceased 8/10/93;

120) PRS agent (formerly Ike’s driver) Deeter B. “Dick” Flohr, deceased 2/24/96;

121) Wade Rodham (Hillary’s first cousin!), deceased 1983;

122) ASAIC and Aide to the Assistant Chief for Security John Campion, deceased 1983;

123) SAIC Robert Taylor, deceased 3/12/81;

124) Jack Holtzhauer, deceased 10/19/98;

125) William C. Davis, deceased;

126) Brooks Keller, deceased 4/3/78;

127) Assistant Chief Russell “Buck” Daniels, deceased;

128) Edith Duncan (Bouck and Baughman’s secretary), deceased;

129) PRS agent James K. “Jack” Fox, deceased 1987;

130) James Griffith, deceased;

131) Assistant Chief Ed Wildy, deceased;

132) Robert Newbrand, deceased;

133) SAIC White House Garage Morgan Gies, deceased 1980;

134) Thomas Wooge, deceased 10/17/68;

135) Jim Hardin, deceased August 2016:

Agents still living (OR MAY STILL BE LIVING-?) who I did not successfully contact and/ or could not locate:

136) Paul Landis; lives near Cleveland, OH; attempted several timesappeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary;

137) Warren “Woody” Taylor; did a Sixth Floor Museum oral history;

138) Willliam Duncan; attempted; I did interview family;

139) James “Mike” Howard; did a Sixth Floor Museum oral history; recent lecture on You Tube; recent interviews via Google News;

140) Michael J. Shannon; lives in Grand Rapids, MI;

141) John “Jack” Giuffre; lives in Sarasota, FL; I did interview family;

142) Robert Burke; attempted several times; on C-SPAN in 1997;

143) Donald Bendickson;

144) Robert Lockwood;

145) Toby Chandler; attempted; appeared on the 2010 KENNEDY DETAIL documentary; did a Sixth Floor Museum oral history;

146) Victor Gonzalez; did a Sixth Floor Museum oral history;

147) Ed Z. Tucker; 

148) Joseph Noonan (if still alive, has Altzheimer’s);

149) Tom Wells; attempted; from Florida;

150) Thomas Behl;

151) Charles Taylor;

152) Bill Skiles;

153) Harry Gibbs;

154) Ed Mougin;

155) Earl Moore;

156) Scott Trundle;

157) Donald C. Brett; from Sarasota, FL;

158) Jim Cantrell-?

159) Frank Farnsworth-?

160) Tom Fridley-?

161) Bob Till-?

162) Bob Gaugh-?

163) Jim Giovanetti-?

164) Doc Walters-?

165) Jack Warner-?

166) Jim Johnson

167) Milt Wilhite-?

168) Harry Geglein-?

169) Gary Seale

170) Bill Cheslock-?

171) Jerry McKinney

172) Arnie Lau

173) Mac Sweazey-?

174) Bill Straughn-?

175) Mike Kelly-?

176) Carroll Winslow-?

177) Gayle Dobish-?

178) Milt Scheuerman-?

179) Bob Lapham-?

180) Bernie Mullady-?; I did get contacted by the family- unclear if he is actually still living;

181) John McCarthy-?

182) Chester Miller-?

183) Roy “Gene” Nunn; from Texas; worked for FEMA;

184) PRS agent Cecil Taylor;

185) PRS agent Ken Thompson-?

186) PRS agent Thomas White-?

187) PRS agent Max Phillips-?

ADDENDUM: OTHER agents I interviewed from the JFK/LBJ era who are still living [did not feel like renumbering!]:

188) Robert Snow, 2003; 

189) Paul Rundle, e-mail;

190) Kent Jordan;

191) Robert DeProspero, 2011-present; DVD THE MAN BEHIND THE SUIT (I was a producer);

192) Howell “Hal” Purvis, 2005;

SENT SEPERATE MESSAGE-

ADDENDUM II: OTHER AGENTS UNSURE IF STILL ALIVE (EXCEPT 3):

Wes Bishop (Training Division)

D. BALDELLI

WARNER BROWN

A. CHALFANT

JOHN CHIPPS

ROGER COUNTS

EARL DECIMA (TRANSPORTATION DIVISION)

WILLIAM GEASA

JOHN GOLDEN (TRANSPORTATION DIVISION)

GUS HOLMES (TRANSPORTATION DIVISION)

BOB HEYN

DAN HURLEY

KENNETH IACOVONI-DECEASED

WILLIAM J. KIERAN

JAMES E. LE GETTE

ROBERT LUTZ

ROGER MANTHE

ROBERT MELCHIORI

DENNIS V.N. MCCARTHY-DECEASED

BILL MCLARIN (ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF TRAINING)

JIMMY L.C. MILLER

JIM MITCHELL (TRANSPORTATION DIVISION)

ED NOLAND

CHUCK ROCHNER

RICHARD ROTH

D. SHAW

JOHN SIMPSON (LATER, SAIC CARTER AND DIRECTOR)-DECEASED

WILL SLADE (TRANSPORTATION DIVISION)

PHILIP STROTHER

JIMMY TAYLOR

RONALD C. TOWNS

JERRY TERRY

GENE F. WOFFORD

agents from other eras I spoke to and/or corresponded with (post JFK/LBJ EXCEPT *TRUMAN)

DAN EMMETT

BOB RITTER

TERRY SAMWAY

GEORGE ROGERS

REX SCOUTEN*

JOHN CARMAN

DONALD STEBBINS

ROBIN DEPROSPERO

DON COX

EARL DRESCHER

JOHN BARLETTA

WILLIAM MCCORD

TOM HEUERMAN

MARK HARMON

MIKE MADDALONI

 

77

Sincerely,

Vince Palamara

Vincent Michael Palamara

 
 
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About vincepalamara

Vincent Palamara was born in Pittsburgh and graduated from Duquesne University with a degree in Sociology. Although not even born when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, Vince brings fresh eyes to an old case. In fact, Vince would go on to study the largely overlooked actions - and inactions - of the United States Secret Service in unprecedented detail, as well as achieving a world's record in the process, having interviewed and corresponded with over 80 former agents (the House Select Committee on Assassinations had the old record of 46 with a 6 million dollar budget and supboena power from Congress), not to mention many surviving family members, White House aides, and even quite a few Parkland and Bethesda medical witnesses for a corresponding project. The result was Survivor's Guilt: The Secret Service & The Failure To Protect President Kennedy. Vince is also the author of the books JFK: From Parkland To Bethesda, The Not-So-Secret Service and Who's Who in the Secret Service. All told, Vince has been favorably mentioned in over 120 JFK and Secret Service related books to date (including two whole chapters in Murder in Dealey Plaza, The Secret Service: The Hidden History Of An Enigmatic Agency by Philip Melanson, and the Final Report of the Assassination Records Review Board, among many others), often at length, in the bibliographies, and in the Secret Service - and even medical evidence - areas of these works. Vince has appeared on the History Channel, C-SPAN, A COUP IN CAMELOT, KING KILL '63, THE MAN BEHIND THE SUIT, National Geographic, PCN, BPTV, local cable access television, YouTube, radio, newspapers, print journals, at national conferences, and all over the internet. Also, Vince's original research materials, or copies of said materials, are stored in the National Archives (by request under Deed Of Gift by the ARRB), the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, Harvard University, the Assassination Archives and Research Center, and the Dallas Public Library. Vince Palamara has become known (as he was dubbed by the History Channel in 2003) "the Secret Service expert." As former JFK Secret Service agent Joe Paolella proclaimed: "You seem to know a lot about the Secret Service, maybe even more than I do!" Agent Dan Emmett calls Vince a Secret Service expert in his new book.
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2 Responses to Secret Service Agents from the JFK/LBJ era: who is still alive, who died, who I interviewed

  1. Jim Metzinger says:

    Vince , which of my family members did you interview pertaining to our father dick metzinger ?

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