Claremore Daily Progress

Community News Network

November 21, 2013

Detective remembers Kennedy's assassin as unnaturally calm

CORSICANA, Texas — Detective Elmer "Sonny" Boyd was doing a last security sweep through the Dallas Trade Mart, where President John F. Kennedy was scheduled to speak, when he and his partner got word of an incident involving the president's motorcade.

The Dallas police homicide detective rushed to Parkland Hospital, where the wounded president had been taken and was pronounced dead. There he and his partner were ordered back downtown, to the School Book Depository, where witnesses said they'd seen gunshots fired at Kennedy.

Boyd was searching the seventh floor when someone found bullet shell casings near a window one floor below. The investigation was unfolding when Boyd learned a friend, Officer J.D. Tippit, had been shot in a confrontation with Lee Harvey Oswald.

“We’d been partners for years,” said Boyd. “Our kids played together. We were close.”

“Oswald shot him across the hood of his car,” before fleeing on foot, said Boyd, adding that Tippit was the reason police nabbed Oswald as quickly as they did. “He was the real hero."

Boyd's memories of the events surrounding Kennedy's death have made him popular, especially as the 50th anniversary of the assassination has neared. This week Boyd attended a reception in the old Book Depository - in what is now called the Sixth-Floor Museum - as well as a showing of the documentary, "Catching Oswald," in which he appears.

Boyd eventually spent 27 with the Dallas police before retiring in 1978, then joining the Euless, Texas, Police for 10 years. After that he returned to Blooming Grove, where he grew up about 50 miles south of Dallas, with his wife of 63 years.

On Tuesday, Boyd, now 86, spoke to high school students in his hometown describing some of the aftermath of Kennedy's death.

Boyd had a front seat to history. He and his partner, Detective Richard Sims, were assigned to escort Oswald to line-ups and interrogation sessions with local police and the Secret Service.

Text Only
Community News Network
  • 20140729-AMX-GIVHAN292.jpg Spanx stretches into new territory with jeans, but promised magic is elusive

    The Spanx empire of stomach-flattening, thigh-slimming, jiggle-reducing foundation garments has expanded to include what the brand promises is the mother of all body-shaping miracles: Spanx jeans.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Medical marijuana opponents' most powerful argument is at odds with a mountain of research

    Opponents of marijuana legalization are rapidly losing the battle for hearts and minds. Simply put, the public understands that however you measure the consequences of marijuana use, the drug is significantly less harmful to users and society than tobacco or alcohol.

    July 29, 2014

  • linda-ronstadt.jpg Obama had crush on First Lady of Rock

    Linda Ronstadt remained composed as she walked up to claim her National Medal of Arts at a White House ceremony Monday afternoon.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can black women have it all?

    In a powerful new essay for the National Journal, my friend Michel Martin makes a compelling case for why we need to continue the having-it-all conversation.

    July 29, 2014

  • Dangerous Darkies Logo.png Redskins not the only nickname to cause a stir

    Daniel Snyder has come under fire for refusing to change the mascot of his NFL team, the Washington Redskins. The Redskins, however, are far from being the only controversial mascot in sports history.  Here is a sampling of athletic teams from all areas of the sports world that were outside the norm.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • 'Rebel' mascot rising from the dead

    Students and alumni from a Richmond, Va.-area high school are seeking to revive the school's historic mascot, a Confederate soldier known as the "Rebel Man," spurring debate about the appropriateness of public school connections to the Civil War and its icons.

    July 28, 2014

  • wd saturday tobias .jpg Stranger’s generosity stuns Ohio veteran

    Vietnam War veteran David A. Tobias was overwhelmed recently when a fellow customer at an OfficeMax store near Ashtabula, Ohio paid for a computer he was purchasing.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072214 Diamond Llama 1.jpg Llama on the loose corralled in Missouri town

    A llama on the lam cruised Main Street Tuesday before it mistook a resident’s fenced backyard for a place to grab a meal and freshen up.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • NWS-HB0713-HowardMartin-004.jpg Airman laid to rest back home in Indiana six decades after death

    The mystery of what happened to a military transport plane that disappeared in the fall of 1952 into an Alaskan glacier was solved two years ago when a helicopter crew spotted the wreckage. But it took another two years to retrieve the remains of Airman Howard Miller and 16 other servicemen passengers. Saturday, Miller was laid to rest in his hometown of Elwood, Ind., with full military honors. Hundreds turned out for the funeral and burial services.

    July 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • New York to offer free lunch to all middle-school students

    New York's $75 billion spending plan for the fiscal year that began last week includes the first step toward offering free lunch for all 1.1 million students, expanding a program now reserved only for the city's poorest children.

    July 9, 2014