Dr. Perry attempted to save President Kennedy's life on November 22, 1963 by performing a tracheostomy and administering closed chest massage in Trauma Room One at Parkland hospital.
The tracheostomy he performed was a small, transverse incision 2.5 to 3 cm wide, which he made through a puncture in the President's throat---below the Adam's apple and just to the right of the midline---a puncture which he characterized as AN ENTRANCE WOUND three different times during the televised hospital press conference that afternoon following JFK's death.
On the day President Kennedy was treated, all of the attending physicians who saw the bullet wound in the throat characterized it as a typical entrance wound. Their observations have always stood in stark opposition to the official U.S. government cover story that President Kennedy was killed by an assassin firing from above and behind, and that he was not shot from the front by anyone.
What most of the public does not know---and what is detailed in my book, "Inside the Assassination Records Review Board," is that late on the night of President Kennedy's autopsy at Bethesda Naval hospital, Federal officials located at Bethesda began harrassing Dr. Perry on the telephone in an attempt to get him to change his mind about having seen an entry wound in the President's throat earlier in the day. Nurse Audrey Bell told me in 1997 that Dr. Perry complained to her the next morning (on Saturday, November 23, 1963) that he had gotten almost no sleep the night before, because unnamed persons at Bethesda had been pressuring him on the telephone all night long to get him to change his opinion about the nature of the bullet wound in the throat, and to redescribe it as an exit, rather than an entrance.
In his 1981 book "Best Evidence," David Lifton documented that the Secret Service confiscated videotapes of the Parkland hospital press conference from at least one local television station, and that Secret Service Chief James Rowley had informed the Warren Commission in 1964 that no videotapes or transcripts of the press conference could be found. But as Lifton revealed, a White House verbatim transcript of the press conference (White House Transcript 1327-C) later surfaced. In my own book, "Inside the ARRB," I reveal that Chief Rowley lied to the Warren Commission when he said no transcripts could be found, for on the last page of transcript 1327-C, the document is stamped as received by Rowley's office on November 26, 1963. His statement to the Warren Commission was therefore false.
A graduate student, James Gochenaur, revealed to both the Church Committee and to the HSCA in the mid-1970s that Secret Service Agent Elmer Moore had confessed to him in 1970 that he had "leaned on Dr. Perry" shortly after the Bethesda autopsy to get him to stop describing the bullet wound in President Kennedy's throat as an entrance wound. (The Bethesda autopsy report concluded it was an exit wound.) According to Gochenaur, Moore also told him that the Secret Service had to investigate the assassination in an expected, predetermined way or they would "get their heads chopped off." Moore, unfortunately, also told Gochenaur that sometimes he thought President Kennedy was "a traitor" because he was "giving things away to the Russians."
[According to Arlen Specter, this same Elmer Moore was present when Chief Justice Warren, Gerald Ford, and he interviewed Jack Ruby in Dallas; and Arlen Specter also revealed in 2003 (at a conference in Pittsburgh) that Elmer Moore was the Secret Service Agent who showed him an undocumented photograph of President Kennedy's back wound during the May 1964 re-enactment of the Dallas motorcade conducted by the Warren Commission.]
Unfortunately, after Federal officials at Bethesda (on November 22-23, 1963) and Elmer Moore (between November 29-December 11, 1963) "leaned on" Dr. Perry, he spent the remainder of his life straddling the fence and saying that the bullet wound in JFK's throat "could have been either" an entrance or an exit wound.
But that is not what he said on the afternoon of the assassination, before there was an official explanation for the crime to fall in line with. White House Transcript 1327-C makes that very clear, as I reveal in my book, in Chapters 7 and 9.
Former Chief Operating Room nurse Audrey Bell related to me in 1997 that Dr. Perry was in a state of torment on November 23, 1963, after being pressured by Federal officials all night long to change his mind, because, as he put it, "my professional credibility is at stake." Sadly, he appears to have decided for the remainder of his life that discretion was the better part of valor.
The story does not end here. The chief prosector at the President's autopsy, Dr. James J. Humes, described the throat wound in the autopsy report as having "widely gaping, irregular edges," and in his Warren Commission testimony, Humes said the gaping wound in the throat was 7 to 8 cm wide. In contrast, Dr. Charles Crenshaw, a third year resident at Parkland in 1963, told ABC's "20/20" news magazine in 1992 that after the tracheostomy tube and flange were removed from the President's neck following his death, that the very small incision made by Dr. Perry closed of its own volition, and that the bullet wound had NOT been obliterated and was still clearly visible. When Dr. Crenshaw viewed the widely published bootleg autopsy photo (from Bethesda Naval hospital) showing the incision in JFK's neck, he expressed the opinion to ABC's "20/20" that the incision in that photograph was DOUBLE the width of the incision Dr. Perry originally made on the President's body.
The descriptions of the incision in the anterior neck, provided by Dr. Humes and Dr. Crenshaw, together constitute de facto evidence that JFK's throat wound was tampered with prior to the start of the Navy autopsy at Bethesda Naval hospital. President Kennedy's body was in the custody of the U.S. Secret Service while enroute Washington D.C. from Dallas, Texas. END