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Warren Commission Hearings: Vol. II - Page 338« Previous | Next »

(Testimony of Peter Paul Gregory)

Mr. Gregory.
I started my primary education in Russia, in 1912, and my education was interrupted by civil war in 1919. I finished high school or the equivalent of high school in Tokyo, Japan, where I attended the American school in Japan.
Mr. Liebeler.
Where did you learn to speak English?
Mr. Gregory.
I learned it in Japan.
Mr. Liebeler.
Were you personally involved in the civil war in Russia?
Mr. Gregory.
Not personally, no. I was too young; I was only 16, 17 at the time.
Mr. Liebeler.
Were any of your relatives involved in that?
Mr. Gregory.
My older brother was an officer in the White Russian Army.
Mr. Liebeler.
Do you presently reside in Fort Worth?
Mr. Gregory.
Yes, sir. I have been residing in Fort Worth for the past 20 years, and prior to that in the oilfields in the western part of Texas for 15 years, and prior to that I resided in California from 1923 to 1929.
Mr. Liebeler.
You are presently self-employed in Fort Worth, is that correct?
Mr. Gregory.
I am presently chairman of the Yates Pool Engineering Committee which is a group of engineers supervising activities in the Yates oilfield in Pecos County, Tex., and I am also a consulting petroleum engineer.
Mr. Liebeler.
And you are fluent in the Russian language, are you?
Mr. Gregory.
I am, I think.
Mr. Liebeler.
In fact, you teach Russian at the Fort Worth Public Library, is that correct?
Mr. Gregory.
Yes, I do; as a civic enterprise. I teach Russian once a week from 10 to 20 weeks a year.
Mr. Liebeler.
Approximately how long have you been doing that, sir?
Mr. Gregory.
For about 3 or 4 years.
Mr. Liebeler.
Would you tell us about your first contact with Lee Harvey Oswald?
Mr. Gregory.
Yes, sir.
It was in the middle of June 1962. On that particular morning, I was in the office, my telephone rang, and the voice on the other end told me that my name was given to him by the Fort Worth Public Library. He knew I was teaching Russian at the library, that he was looking for a job as a translator or interpreter in the Russian and English languages, and that he would like for me to give him a letter testifying to that effect.
He spoke to me in English, so I suggested to him, not knowing who that was, that he might drop by my office and I would be glad to give him a test. He did. He came by the office, about 11 o'clock that morning, and I gave him a short test by simply opening a book at random and asking him to read a paragraph or two and then translate it.
He did it very well. So I gave him a letter addressed to whom it may concern that in my opinion he was capable of being an interpreter or a translator.
Mr. Liebeler.
What happened after you gave Mr. Oswald--this individual was Lee Harvey Oswald?
Mr. Gregory.
Yes, sir; that individual was Lee Harvey Oswald.
After that, I asked him--I noticed that he spoke with what I thought to be a Polish accent, so I asked him if he were of Polish origin, and he stated that he was not, that he was raised in Fort Worth, Tex., but that he learned Russian in the Soviet Union where he lived for 2 1/2 or 3 years.
He also told me that he married a Russian girl, and that he brought his wife with him, and that they also had a baby. I told him that I knew of no openings at the time--I didn't know of any--for services of a translator or interpreter, but that if he would leave his address I would be glad to get in touch with him if and when I learned of any such openings.
He gave me his address. He lived with his brother at that time at the western edge of Fort Worth.
Mr. Liebeler.
Did you ever send him any work as a translator or interpreter?
Mr. Gregory.
No, sir.
Mr. Liebeler.
Did you and Mr. Oswald have lunch together that day.
Mr. Gregory.
Yes, sir. It was about noontime when I gave him that test, so I invited him to lunch, and during the lunch being naturally curious about the
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