$6.00 donated in past month
From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: East Bay | U.S. | Government & Elections
Perry Russo, A Connection To The JFK Assassination
In Memory of President John F. Kennedy
May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963
In Memory of John F. Kennedy
(May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963)
John F. Kennedy (JFK) was the youngest man ever elected as the President of the United States, and he was the youngest President to die in office. JFK was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, on May 29, 1917.
JFK was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, and Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested and charged with the assassination of JFK.
But, who really killed JFK?
Perry Russo, A Connection To The JFK Assassination
By Anonymous - November 11, 2013
I can still recall the moment I was in grade school when Sister Isador came into the class room to send all of us children back home because President John F. Kennedy had just been assassinated in Dallas, Texas. We were all totally shocked by the experience.
I can also recall the following day at home on a Saturday when I was watching TV about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, when Lee Harvey Oswald was shot live on TV by Jack Ruby, in the basement of a Dallas police station.
A few years later, the Jim Garrison Investigation in New Orleans probed into the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and turned up a key witness by name of Perry Russo.
Perry Russo was the key witness for the Jim Garrison investigation looking into the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and I used to be friends with Perry Russo when I was a teenager living in New Orleans many years ago.
The death of President John F. Kennedy (JFK) still remains a deep mystery to me, and the history of what was going on around me while I was a teenager has troubled me for many years regarding the period that I spent living in New Orleans, so many years ago.
Rarely through the years have I talked about this with others. And hardly ever in detail or at length...
JFK was long dead by the time I got to New Orleans, and there was nothing I could do to change what had occurred. But his death has been on my mind for a very long time, especially every time November rolls around and the media goes into frenzy mode to recall when JFK was assassinated in Dallas back in 1963.
Regardless of my feelings, somehow through a fluke of life, back in 1970 or shortly before I became involved with, and became close friends with a fellow named Perry Russo. Perry Russo was the the star witness of Jim Garrison (New Orleans District Attorney), and the Garrison Investigation back in those days, and Perry was the star witness of the court trial of Clay Shaw, and the conspiracy to kill JFK.
In later years, in a JFK select committee report, the committee members came to believe that Lee Harvey Oswald was not alone in the assassination of JFK, and they believe that others were involved in the assassination. Since I was a teenager, this was also my belief... Click on report below...
Also in later years, Perry Russo was involved in helping Oliver Stone make the film called JFK, that reminds me of a period when I was a homeless teenager living on the streets of New Orleans.
I used to be a close friend of Perry Russo back in those days, and worked for him while living at a crash pad that Perry owned which was called the Youth Rescue League in the French Quarter of New Orleans during 1970.
Click on links below for a photo of Perry Russo...
Perry's photo in later years from Oliver Stone's JFK film...
I have been trying through the years to better understand what I was involved in, who I was involved with, and what was going on there before I arrived in New Orleans, and while I was there...
After my experience with Perry Russo and my experience in New Orleans, I never believed the government line of B.S. that Lee Harvey Oswald killed JFK.
I was a close friend of Perry Russo for well over a year or more in the French Quarter of New Orleans. I met Perry Russo when I was a 16 year old runaway during January or early February of 1970, when I hitch hiked my way to New Orleans from Houston, for Mardi Gras that year.
I was with a friend named Gary McDaniels when we were hitch hiking a ride from Houston to New Orleans, when Perry Russo picked us up and took us for a long ride to New Orleans. Along the way we quickly became friends, and Perry offered Gary and I a job, and place to live at a crash pad he was about to open up called the Youth Rescue league. Gary and I were both runaway teenagers in those days, and worked at the buck a night crash pad checking people in at night, and cleaning the place up the following mornings.
In my spare time when away from the crash pad, I used to love going nearby to a small joint that served hamburgers near Jackson Square where I played pin ball at. Often I would also hang out afternoons in a small bar across the street from the burger joint to play ping pong, or would hang out in Jackson Square to get some sunshine and excitement along with all the other people hanging out getting stoned, and having a good time listening to some great music from the 60's.
In time during my days in New Orleans, I was to learn that Perry Russo knew Lee Harvey Oswald while he was still alive, and that Perry was close friends with Clay Shaw, and David Ferrie. All four of whom were allegedly involved in the Jim Garrison (New Orleans DA) investigation of the assassination of John F. Kennedy (JFK). Lee Harvey Oswald was part of the investigation, even though he was dead (assassinated) by the time the investigation began by Jim Garrison.
While Perry Russo was close friends with David Ferrie, Lee Harvey Oswald used to be David Ferrie's roommate.
Clay Shaw was brought to trial by Jim Garrison, the DA of New Orleans, and Perry Russo was the star witness of Jim Garrison, and the Garrison Investigation, and the trial that was taking place against Clay Shaw.
The Jim Garrison investigation was still taking place when I went to New Orleans, back in early 1970, and Perry was real paranoid because of the never ending investigation swirling around him, and the media attention to his life.
As I was saying, I breezed into New Orleans shortly before Mardi Gras in 1970, and was picked up hitch hiking with a friend by Perry Russo, somewhere between Houston and New Orleans.
I was a teenage runaway back in those days, and my friend and I (Gary McDaniels) wanted to experience Mardi Gras, which is why we were hitch hiking to New Orleans from Houston.
I was living on the streets of Chicago as a homeless runaway with my friend Bob Schaefer when we met Gary McDaniels in Chicago who was with a woman named Margurite who he claimed was his wife, even though they both were only around 16 years old. Gary and Margurite were hanging out with another kid named David Lane across the street from the Grey Hound bus station when we all first met one another, while Bob and I were broke and hungry one morning wondering what we could do to get something to eat. All three of them were from Texas, and I later learned that they made a living by traveling around doing armed robberies.
Gary and Margurite liked pulling off a murphy on local business men in suits. Gary would rent a cheap hotel room, and would hide in the closet with a 38 pistol. Margurite would dress up like a prostitute, and go out and pick up a businessman to take back to the hotel room where Gary would wait till they climbed into bed, then he would leap out of the closet and say, "Ah ha, I caught you with my wife." Then Gary would rob the businessman, and he and Margurite would flee the scene in a taxi cab to a distant part of the city where they would spend the money.
Getting back to Parry Russo, months later when Perry picked us up somewhere outside of Houston, during the ride Perry offered Gary and I a place to stay at a buck a night ($1.00) crash pad he was about to open up in the French Quarter, that he called the Youth Rescue League.
He also gave us a job working there to help run the place and to keep the place clean. Around 70 people a night would check in, and sleep on the floors, and there was a small TV people could watch, and the place had a small bathroom people could use. Often people used the bathroom to shoot their dope in....
It was mostly young people (16 - 25) passing through from all over the country to join in the Mardi Gras celebration taking place, but there ended up being a core group of homeless people residing there including Vietnam Vets, aspiring artists, and some heavy duty dope fiends.
Gary and I would chase everyone off in the morning, and try to have the place cleaned up for them to come back to by late afternoon/early evening later that day.
I believe that the Youth Rescue League was on Burgundy Street from what I recall, and it was in a one story duplex. A close friend of Perry rented out the other half of the same residential duplex building.
I spent well over a year hanging out with Perry. I also enjoyed spending a lot of time cruising around with him at night while he was making the rounds in New Orleans. I really had no idea what Perry was up to, but eventually I suspected that he may have been selling guns, and was making the rounds picking up money and dropping money off with his many connections. Perry was very secretive when making his rounds at night.
Meanwhile during that same period, Perry and my friend Gary McDaniels became lovers. Perry Russo liked to go to bed with teenage boys back in those days, and Perry was attracted to Gary.
Perry was straight back in those days, in the context of staying away from drugs. It was not long though before Gary and I got Perry to smoke some pot with us, a got him to try some orange sunshine acid, and Perry eventually joined us in shooting up some smack now and then while listening to some beautiful Nina Simone music in the back room at the crash pad.
While we were stoned it eventually became evident that Perry Russo was a nervous wreck from the Jim Garrison investigation that involved him, and at times Perry became a very scary guy.
I eventually learned that Perry knew Lee Harvey Oswald, and according to Perry and his friends, Lee Harvey Oswald used to be a hustler (male prostitute) for gay men. To say the least, life was pretty interesting in the world of Perry Russo.
When Perry and his friend Shane told me that Lee Harvey Oswald used to be a hustler, I believed them. Perry and my friend Gary McDaniels were still lovers at that point (sexual partners), and I distinctly recall the day Gary came out of Perry's room one morning and he was very upset. Gary told me that Perry told him that Lee harvey Oswald did not kill the president (JFK), and said that Perry told him that three other men killed the president in Dallas a few years back.
It was still sinking in to Gary and I, that Perry Russo was linked to a lot of stuff going on, and it was starting to really alarm us. When we first met Perry, he failed to mention that he was involved in the Garrison investigation or that he used to be friends with Lee Harvyy Oswald. In time he started to tell us what was going on in his life, and that he (his name) was appearing in many news paper stories, all over the world regarding the death of JFK.
Gary and I were both teenagers at that time, and were just trying to survive in those days. We were stressed as it was. Add all of that to all of the intrigue going on with Perry Russo then, and there we were working for Perry, and living in his house that he turned into a crash pad. It all seemed very weird, at the same time it was all normal to us... I had no idea what we really got ourselves into back then, and years later it really sunk in that Perry was involved in some heavy stuff when I knew him.
Sometime more than a year after first hooking up with Perry, the Youth Rescue League was raided by the cops of New Orleans.
Big Red the manager got arrested, and the cops found a bunch of Orange Sunshine (LSD) that Red was selling for me at the crash pad. (According to Perry Russo).
Sometime earlier I ripped off 2,000 hits of orange sunshine from a guy in the syndicate, and shared half of the acid with a fellow named Mark who owned a large waterbed store on Bourbon street at the time. Mark approached me one day and asked me if I was interested in making a big score by ripping someone off of a bunch of acid, and he said he would be willing to split the take with me. I ended up ripped the fellow off from the mob by impersonating a law official, ran off with the dope and split it with Mark from the waterbed store. Looking back on it all, I must have been an honest thief back in those days when I was dumb enough to give Mark 1,000 hits of orange sunshine that was sealed like a round baseball in saran wrap.
Perry really freaked out about the bust when Red got busted with a lot of my orange sunshine, and he thought that I had set him up. Later that night Perry kicked my door in at a sleazy hotel that I was staying at during that period, and Perry kidnapped me at gunpoint. That was around midnight through 1:00am from what I recall.
Perry was with two others, and they drove me away at gunpoint to some swamp lands near the airport, telling me along the way that they were going to kill me. I really believed them and can recall being very frightened.
I begged and pleaded for my life, and swore up and down that I did not set him up, or call the cops on the crash pad, which was true. It was my money and dope the cops found at the crash pad, and it was a big loss to my finances at that time.
Perry and the two others beat the hell out of me, and left me laying on the ground bleeding, after Perry finally became convinced that I did not set him up. They drove away and left me there out side of the airport deep in some tall swamp grass that covered the whole area.
Before leaving me, Perry told me that I was to leave town (New Orleans) immediately, and that if he ever saw me again, he would kill me. I absolutely believed him.
Around three days later I ran into Perry on Bourbon St., and Perry came up to me real nice like, and apologized for beating me up and kidnapping me from my hotel room a few days earlier.
He even invited me over for dinner and said that he wanted to make things right, and he wanted to let me know that he was not angry at me any longer.
I became so frightened at that point, that I left New Orleans the following day, and headed back to Chicago. From what I recall, I believe that my friend Bob Schaefer (Indian Bob) left with me back to Chicago.
As the years have rolled by, I still think of Perry Russo and my time in New Orleans that I spent around him and his friends.
I have done a little bit of reading through the years to have a better understanding of who Perry was, and what was going on down in New Orleans while I was there, and before I arrived.
Oddly, many years after first meeting Perry, the big shocker for me was when I realized that Perry Russo was in the JFK film, when I was sitting at home one night watching the wonderful film by Oliver Stone. In the movie, I heard the character of Jim Garrison asking Clay Shaw, "And what about Perry Russo?"
What about Perry Russo? I jumped up out of my seat around three feet in the air, when I heard that question!
I was happy to get out of New Orleans with my life when I was a teenager, and even though I liked Perry Russo very much despite all of his faults and problems, including his alleged involvement with the assassination of JFK, I am glad that he did not kill me that windy night near the airport in New Orleans, where I thought that I was going to die...
Even though I was only a teenager and liked Perry very much, he was a scary guy at times.
I can still recall a fellow named Big John who was Perry's friend and neighbor next door, in the same duplex residential building of the Youth Rescue League.
Big John used to shack up with a teenage boy nick-named Little John as lovers, and it was Little John that was with Perry, when Perry kidnapped me at gun point from the sleazy hotel on Bourbon St., that I was staying in when the Youth Rescue League was raided by the cops, and Big Red got arrested with my acid (LSD).
I also clearly recall Perry Russo telling me several times that he was working for Carlos Marcello of the Mafia, as a way to explain how he got some of his money. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Marcello
Perry Russo knew Lee Harvey Oswald before Oswald was killed by Jack Ruby, and Pery was close friends with David Ferrie. It was David Ferrie who flew Carlos Marcello (Mafioso Mob Boss) back into the country after Robert Kennedy deported Carlos Marcello to the country of Guatemala in 1961. In 1962, Carlos Marcello made it clear to an investigator that he was to arrange for JFK's death in someway. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Marcello
Oddly enough... I recall that one evening while I was making the rounds with Perry in New Orleans, he dropped me off at a restaurant that he wanted me to hang out at until he came back to pick me up. While I sat at a table eating some food, waiting for Perry to come back, the owner of the restaurant approached me and asked me if I knew who the man was that dropped me off at the restaurant? I said, yes, thats Perry Russo. The owner then warned me that Perry Russo was a very bad man, and that I needed to get as far away from him as possible. I never forgot that moment, and I never mentioned it to Perry.
Perry liked to hang out with me when he made the rounds at night, and often he would drop me off at a restaurant for a while so I could get a meal inside me. He would take off for an hour or so, and would always come back later to pick me up. I never asked him what he was up to, and he never offered to tell me what was going on.
I also used to join Perry, my friend Gary McDaniels, and Bob Schaefer (Indian Bob) for a plate of beans and rice at Buster Holmes restaurant in New Orleans back in those days. I can still recall seeing numerous dogs wandering around the restaurant as I sat there eating a plate full of white rice and gravey, some french bread and all the water I could drink for only thirty cents.
All these years later, I can also vividly recall some of the people staying at the Youth Rescue League (Perry's crash pad), including a strange fellow called Snowflake who loved to hang out sniffing glue while painting pictures in front of the crash pad. Snowflake used to paint over pictures that he would take with a camera, and then he would sell the paintings to tourists nearby at Jackson Square.
Then there was Alexander who used to sell lots of white cross speed as a way to make a living, and I can still recall many evenings watching Alexander laying on the floor while he was jerking off inside of his sleeping bag. It just seemed a little odd back then that Alexander did not care that people watched while he was playing with himself....
And there was Weird Harold, a Vietnam vet who used to be a pan handler that had a manager named Gig. Gig would get a major cut of any money Weird Harold would make from pan handling the tourists that came into town looking for excitement.
A fellow named Shane used to come by and visit Perry Russo, Gary McDaniels and myself at night at the crash pad. Shane was a close friend of Perry, and we all used to hang out getting stoned in one of the back rooms of the crash pad that Perry had painted totally black, with crinkled tin foil on the ceiling, and 60's hippie posters on the walls that were lit up by the numerous black lights in the room. Perry used to love listening to Nina Simone albums as we got high, and Shane used to bring large bags that were full of boiled cray fish (craw dads) that we used to munch on like popcorn when we got stoned.
At times, Shane used to brag about Perry being involved in the Jim Garrison investigation of JFK's assassination, and he would tell Gary and I how Perry used to hang out with Lee Harvey Oswald, Clay Shaw, and David Ferrie before President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas on that fateful day of November 22, 1963. In a hushed excited voice, at times Shane would swear up and down that Lee Harvey Oswald used to be a hustler that made money by going to gay bars in New Orleans, where gay men would offer money to go to bed with him.
I can also recall that there was another buck a night crash pad in the French Quarter of New Orleans that to compete with the Youth Rescue League that was called the Head Inn, but I never stayed there and was very loyal to Perry for some reason.
It seems strange that I can still recall how many of the poor people at the crash pad (Youth Rescue League) ended up losing their teeth to a crooked dentist nearby that would pull out their teeth, and then give them a prescription for four tabs of blue morphine that people would shoot up in the bathroom of the crash pad. The morphine was strong enough that it could be cut into four parts, and in time many people lost most of their teeth to the crooked dentist. Not me... No way... Much as I liked blue morphine back in those days, this was the kind of scene that I was smart enough to avoid...
I am still troubled by the death of JFK and through the years have done a lot of reading about those that allegedely have been involved in the conspiracy to kill him. Regardless, I still have many fond memories of New Orleans when I was a young teenage runaway hanging out on the streets of New Orleans.
November 11, 2013
See a few links and additional information below...
In Memory of John F. Kennedy
(May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963)
John F. Kennedy (JFK) was the youngest man elected President of the United States, and he was the youngest President to die in office. JFK was born in Brookline, Massachusetts, on May 29, 1917.
JFK was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, and Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested and charged with the assassination of JFK.
Report of the Select Committee on Assassinations of the US House of Reps
Clay Shaw Trial Testimony of Perry Russo
The Trial of Clay Shaw
The Last Testament of Perry Russo
Conversation with Perry Russo
Jim Garrison Interview / Playboy -- October 1967
Don Jordan & Perry Russo
Search the Trial Database...
Perry Russo links / A Chronology - Assassination of JFK
Transcripts of the Clay Shaw Trial
JFK Assassination Records - National Archives
History Matters Archive
JFL Assassination Information
Final Report of the Assassination Records Review Board
AARB Staff Memos
AARB Medical Testing
CIA blocks JFK document releases
Zapruder Film A Fraud?
Declassified (head wound info)
JFK Autopsy Report
Naval Medical School Autopsy Report A63-272 (destroyed by James J. Humes on November 24, 1963)
Coalition on Political Assassinations (COPA)
AARC Public Library - Table of Contents
JFK Assassination Records & Reports & the Church Committee Records
JFK Assassination Reports and Records
Orleans Parish Grand Jury Transcripts
The Orleans Parish Grand Jury transcripts consist of testimony taken during 1967, 1968, and early 1969, as part of the Garrison investigation into the murder of President John F. Kennedy. These transcripts were ordered destroyed in the early 1970s by Garrison's successor as District Attorney, Harry Connick.
But the man who was supposed to destroy them, Gary Raymond, instead hid them in a garage for over two decades. Then in 1995, Raymond arranged for journalist Richard Angelico to pass these grand jury transcripts on to the Assassination Records Review Board. Connick, still the DA, convicted both men of contempt of court, and demanded that the ARRB return the transcripts.
The ARRB, meanwhile, was still seeking records (5 drawers of files) of Garrison investigation files held by Connick. The ARRB won its battle with Connick, and both the grand jury transcripts presented here and the investigation files are now part of the JFK Collection at the National Archives. The AARC is also in possession of a good deal of this material.
(Ramparts - William W. Turner)
The Garrison Probe
The Garrison Commission On the Assassination of President Kennedy
"It's not a matter or wanting to gain headlines," says Garrison indignantly. "It's a matter of not being able to sleep at night. I am in an official position in a city where the greater part of the planning of the assassination of President Kennedy took place, and this was missed by the Warren Commission. What would these people who have attacked me do if they were here and had official responsibility? Would they be able to say, "Jack Kennedy is dead and there is nothing I can do about it?"
William W. Turner
(JFK Assassination - The real JFK shooter was allegedly a fellow named Lucien Sarti)
These documentaries have been highly controversial. In the documentary broadcast in 1988 Stephen Rivele argued that the assassination of John F. Kennedy had been organized by Antoine Guerini, the Corsican crime boss in Marseilles. According to Rivele, Lucien Sarti fired from behind the wooden fence on the grassy knoll. The first shot was fired from behind and hit Kennedy in the back. The second shot was fired from behind, and hit John Connally. The third shot was fired from in front, and hit Kennedy in the head. The fourth shot was from behind and missed. As well as Sarti, also named Sauveur Pironti and Roger Bocognani as being involved in the killing. However, Pironti and Bocognani both had alibis and Rivele was forced to withdraw the allegation.
1) Stephen Rivele, transcript from The Men Killed Who Kennedy (1988)
The initial turning point was the first meeting that I had with the French narcotics trafficker at Leavenworth Penitentiary. His name was Christian David. He had been a member of the old French Connection heroin network. He had then been a leader of the Corsican drug trafficking network in South America known as the Latin Connection. And he had also been an intelligence agent for a number of intelligence services around the world. In exchange for my help in finding him an attorney to represent him against the possibility of his deportation to France after he finished his sentence at Leavenworth, he agreed to give me a certain amount of information concerning the assassination based upon his own knowledge. The first thing that he told me, very reluctantly and only after four or five hours of my arguing with him, was that he was aware that there had been a conspiracy to murder the president, and indeed in May or June of 1963 in Marseilles, he had been offered the contract to kill President Kennedy. That was the initial breakthrough, if you will. He was eventually deported to France. I remained in contact with him. I went to Paris to interview him in two prisons in Paris. And in the fear that he would be either committed to an asylum or that he would be convicted of an old murder charge, he gradually gave me additional information about the assassination.
David’s position was that there were three killers, and that they had been hired on a contract which had been placed with the leader of the Corsican Mafia at Marseilles, a man named Antoine Guerini. Guerini, he said, was asked to supply three assassins of high quality, experienced killers to murder the President, and that Guerini did so. In the course of one of the first significant conversations I had with David on this subject, he told me that he had been in Marseilles in May or June of 1963, and that every evening he went to Antoine Guerini’s club on the old Port of Marseilles to meet people who owed him money. And one evening, Guerini sent for him, asked him to come to the office which was above the club. Guerini told him that he had an important contract, and he asked David if he were interested. David said, "Who’s the contract on?" Guerini said, "an American politician." David asked, "Well is it a congressman, a senator?" And Guerini said, "higher than that... The highest vegetable." At that point of course David knew who he was talking about. David asked him where was the contract to be carried out. And when Guerini said it would be done inside the United States, David refused on the grounds that that was much too dangerous.
Click below for more details...