Visiting Marina Oswald

Visiting Marina Oswald

“Get out of my property,” hissed the 75-year-old Kenneth Porter with restrained anger. He was clearly not enamored of this unannounced visit from the Netherlands. The second husband of Marina Oswald Porter was assisted by a loud barking, medium-sized dog. “Get out of my property, didn’t you see the warning sign at the beginning of the driveway?” The hope for a little conversation was soon gone, let alone a picture and a short, unique interview with his wife Marina. “No, you do not have to call me later. Go away, now!”

After a long search on the internet a few years ago, I found out her address: a detached house on a large piece of land near Rockwall, a suburb of Dallas, Texas. Obviously I had submitted written requests for interviews, but I unfortunately never got an answer. I was in the neighborhood on September 9, 2013, driving from Memphis to Dallas, and I thought: let’s give it a shot. But the message was clear. The 72-year-old Marina apparently was not lying when she wrote to an auction house in May 2013 that she wanted to let go of her past. She enclosed the wedding ring from her first marriage in the envelope – the only thing she had left of that part of her life.

The golden ring (it fetched $108,000) was slid to Marina’s finger on April 30, 1961. Just over two and a half years later husband Lee Harvey Oswald was arrested for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Off course it was a bit dissapointing, not getting the chance to meet Marina Oswald Porter. Not that I had high expectations of it, but it would have been great to meet her and ask her about her life and opinions on the assassination. Not many people have had that opportunity recently: articles with her are always at least thirty years old, with a few exceptions. After this missed opportunity we drove to Dallas – luckily there were enough interesting conversations ahead of us!

Article continues below the photos.

“Oswald is innocent”
Marina is now in her eighties. For years, she worked in the surplus store of her friend, Linda Wilson. The chain-smoking and otherwise extremely frugal native Russian, who officially became an American in 1991, no longer believes in Oswald’s guilt, although she has often changed her opinion over the years. She is furious, however, with the man who left her in an impossible situation in 1963. In front of the Warren Commission, the government commission that investigated the Kennedy assassination, she stated that she did not doubt her former husband’s guilt in JFK’s murder. “They did not tell me everything,” Marina later explained. “I only heard what portrayed Oswald in a bad light. I was very tired, partly because I was walking around with a baby only a few weeks old. In addition, I was indoctrinated: there were threats that I had to cooperate if I wanted to stay in the United States as a Russian.” At that time, in early 1964, Marina also repeatedly expressed in the press that she was extremely ashamed of what her husband had done. Even in 1980, seventeen years after the murder, she stated that Oswald was guilty. But, she said, he had not acted alone.

A Brilliant Conspiracy
Marina publicly expressed her doubts for the first time in 1988, 25 years after the murder. “It was a complicated plot, brilliantly executed. Are there rational people who believe that this murder was committed by one man? Oswald claimed to be a scapegoat after the murder. With everything that has come to light, I am increasingly inclined to believe that he was telling the truth. In front of the Warren Commission, I was like a puppy. Only 23 years old, immature. I think differently now. Only half the truth has come to light, and this beautiful country deserves the whole truth.” A few years later, in 1992, she added that “Oswald simply did not shoot. I believe in a conspiracy, perfectly organized and later covered up.” On November 22, 1996, she even shared her opinion on the couch with Oprah Winfrey. “But,” she declared to author Norman Mailer at that time, “I don’t want to convince the American people. That is not my intention at all. As long as I have clarity for myself.”

Since then, she has not appeared in the media. In the autumn of her life, she rarely or never appears in public, not even for visitors from the Netherlands.

2013: Oswald widow snapped for 1st time in 25 years

Perry Vermeulen

Author of two books related to the assassination of JFK, published in The Netherlands in 2008 and 2012. Wrote a lot about this subject; built this website in 2023 to accommodate all those different stories. I will continue to produce new articles on the case.

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