The mystery of the Babushka Lady
Directly following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, FBI and CIA investigators began questioning and taking statements from the spectators whom were present on the afternoon of Novemeber 22, 1963
Those who were filming or photographing the day, especially when the shots were fired had pictures and film taken by the investigators.
These statements, pictures and films would then be pieced together to determine exactly what happened.
The photos and films were not necessarily of the best quality, but never the less, they provided evidence that has since been examined over and over.
In the panic following the shooting, bystanders fled for cover, it was not immediately clear which direction the shots came from and people ran in every direction, running in to each other and fleeing towards whatever “safe” places they could find.
The evidence the investigators collected was conflicting, hundreds of witness recalled different events, statements changed, the pictures and films became more important.
A strange mystery
Clearly shown in several photographs is a woman with what appears to be a camera of some kind in front of her face, pointing directly at the president’s motorcade when the shots were fired.
She is located close to the street, and had an extremely good vantage point for capturing the events surrounding the shooting.
Over her hair she is wearing a scarf of a tan or light brown color — the headscarf earned her the nickname of the “Babushka Lady,” a reference to a similar Russian scarf.
While she appears in several photos, probably the best and closest image of the woman is from a movie taken by Marie Muchmore, a spectator of the motorcade. Unfortunately, the mystery woman has her back to Muchmore, obscuring a clear identification. She appears in several other photographs, but never clearly enough to make some kind of identification.
Who was the Babushka Lady?
The investigating officials were intrigued, the woman was so close to the shooting, and the photographic evidence shows that instead of running away after the shots were fired, as many people did, the Babushka Lady continued filming the procession.
A further call went out from the FBI to everyone who had been in the vicinity of the assassination and had been taking photos or filming.
The Babuska lady never came forward, despite evidence showing that she was capturing the tragedy in some way from a relatively good position.
Interestingly, a Dallas film developer later told FBI agents that he had developed a single color slide brought in by an unknown woman. The slide was somewhat blurry, but from the developer’s description, it matched up as being taken from the spot the Babushka Lady was standing — or very close to it.
A false claim
In 1970, Beverly Oliver claimed to be the Babushka Lady and that her camera had been confiscated by the FBI on the day of the assassination and never returned. At first this seemed to be the solution to the mystery, until Oliver identified the camera she had used, which was a model that had not been in production until several years after the assassination. Similarly, witnesses who had been standing near the Babushka Lady stated Oliver was not nearby. Additionally, analysis of the photos that included the Babushka Lady seem to indicate a woman much older and heavier than Oliver, who was 17 and slim in 1963.
So why hasn’t she ever come forward? What does she have to hide?
Whatever happened to the mysterious “Babushka Lady,” who was seen in pictures and in the film of the assassination?
Given that the Babushka Lady is very close to the motorcade, her film would offer invaluable evidence if it could be located today.
The problem is the Babushka Lady and her film vanished from history.
Read: The JFK Mysteries
“Babushka Lady”, Wikipedia