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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. I - Page 212« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Mrs. Marguerite Oswald Resumed)

Mrs. Oswald.
for one thing. And John Edward--that is his career--14 years. My brother was in the Navy. His father was a veteran. We are a servicemen family. And I know Lee loved the Marines. I told you how he read the manual before he left. And on leaves, coming home, Lee would brag. He even said when he came home from Japan, "mother, my stay in Japan, just the trip alone would have cost about $2,000."
Now, Lee, I know also, was in the Air Force of the Marines, and he went to Biloxi, Miss., for schooling. Lee has had quite a bit of schooling. And Lee spoke Russian equivalent to 1 year when he defected to Russia. I have that on his application from the Albert Schweitzer College. And Lee spoke and wrote Russian fluently when he went to Russia. So Lee learns Russian in the Marines.
Mr. Rankin.
Did he ever talk about reenlisting into the Marines after he returned?
Mrs. Oswald.
Well, when Lee returned he was with me 3 days, and then, of course, he went over to visit Robert's house. So actually we didn't talk. I was trying to find a home. And I didn't think he would go. I was hoping that Lee would not go on the ship and work. I was hoping he would stay home. We were interrupted before. When he said to me about, that he wanted to work on a ship in the import and export business, I started to tell you I agreed with him. And this is how you have to do---particularly when you are a woman. A father could tell the man, "You are not going to do this." But I went along with that. And then the next day I said, "Lee, why don't you stay", and I went into that--"until I settle my claim, and I can babysit and we can get along." He said, "No, my mind is made up. If I stay, we will both be in these circumstances." So on the third day--I knew he wanted to do this, but I didn't think he was going to do it for a month or two. But on the third day he came with his suitcase in the room and he said, "Mother, I am off." So since his mind was made up, I told him goodby.
Mr. Rankin.
He said nothing about reenlisting in the Marines?
Mrs. Oswald.
No, the three days he was home. That was the conversation, about him going on a ship. I saw his passport. And his passport was stamped "import and' export" on his passport.
Mr. Rankin.
Did it say anything about Soviet Russia on it?
Mrs. Oswald.
No. What I am saying is that I saw the passport with big writing "export and import." I think it was blue. I did not read the passport, because Lee was there, but I happened to see the passport, "export and import" stamped.
Whether he had another passport, I do not know. I didn't ask. I am saying this--and God knows I am telling you the truth. I am just this type person. It is because of my life.
Mr. Rankin.
Did you know that he spoke Russian at that time, when he had this passport?
Mrs. Oswald.
No, sir; I did not know. The only time I knew that he spoke Russian is what came out in the news. But when I really knew was Lee's application for the Albert Schweitzer College. Shall we go into that--the application?
Mr. Rankin.
Mrs. Oswald.
Now, the first that I knew--no, I am wrong. It is not the first I knew. I had received a letter from Lee while in the Marines before he knew of my trouble, stating that he was accepted by the Albert Schweitzer College. And that letter was in the sea bag that I told you about, that I do not have.
Mr. Dulles.
Would you give us the date of that letter?
Mrs. Oswald.
The other letter would have been--let's see. Lee was told in July about my trouble. And the other letter I would say would be about May or June. This is March 22. I received this in care of Lee. And you see, sir, I have a lot of addresses, because I am now living in these homes.
Mr. Dulles.
'57 or '58?
Mrs. Oswald.
Let's see now. Then I heard from the State Department in 1961.
"Due to a number of circumstances, we found ourselves forced to make a slight change in the arrival and departure dates of the third term. The first
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