Stemmons Freeway, Dallas, Texas, moments after JFK was shot on Nov. 22, 1963

Mortal ErrorHidden in Plain Sight.

From the moment Baltimore gunsmith Howard Donahue reluctantly concluded in 1977 that ballistic evidence proved President Kennedy was mistakenly shot by Secret Service agent George Hickey on November 22, 1963, he assumed the agent had involuntarily squeezed the trigger of his AR15 as he lost his balance in the back of the open…

Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas — circa 1963

Did a Secret Service Agent Accidentally Shoot JFK?

In early 1989, I was working as a business reporter in Washington, D.C., and interviewing a private investigator for a story about his company. At the end of our conversation, he casually mentioned he’d done some research into the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

“Oh yeah?” I said, in an ironic, indifferent way. “So who killed him?” He said: “Well, I think this gunsmith in Baltimore, a guy named Howard Donahue, figured it out.” The private eye showed me a magazine article from 1977 and as I read it, my skepticism began to fade. …

Bonar Menninger

Kansas City-based freelance writer

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