Document’s Author: Douglas Horne/ARRB Date Created: 09/16/97
Agency Name: Witness/Consultants
Attendees: Fred Reeves, Doug Horne, Michelle Combs, and Jim Goslee
Topic: ARRB Interviewed Fred Reeves-Corrected Version (9/17/97
Summary of the Meeting
Fred Reeves (James F. Reeves, Jr.) came to Washington at our invitation to discuss his knowledge of a post-defection investigation of Oswald in 1959 (and early 1960). At the time he was a G-12, and was a Navy civilian Intelligence Operations Specialist in the 11th Naval District Intelligence Office in San Diego. He said he was the head of the office in San Diego. [The meeting was tape recorded, this is only a summary of highlights.]
Fred told us that about a week or so after Oswald had defected (he remembered it as August, 1959), he received a phone call from Washington, in which two people, a Navy Captain from Washington (Head of ONI?), and Rufus Taylor, who Reeves described as the incoming Director of Naval Intelligence, jointly called him and told him of the defection, and told him to conduct a background investigation. He said that he went to MCAS El Toro, copied Oswald’s service record, and mailed the service record and a list of several names of Marine Corps associates of Oswald to ONI in Washington. He said ONI in Washington ran the investigation and directed that various people in the field from ONI to conduct an investigation of Oswald. He explained that OPNAV forms 5520-152 (“152s”) were requests sent to the field from ONI to conduct investigations, and OPNAV forms 5520-119 (“119s”) were investigative reports sent back to ONI in Washington reporting on the results of interviews or investigations.
He said that although he did not interview anyone himself, he did see 12 to 15 “119” reports come across his desk regarding the Oswald investigation in late 1959 and early 1960 – he said he was “cut in” on these reports by ONI at his request. He said he was aware of “119” reports filed from Japan and Texas, also during this time period. He said the emphasis of the reports was to try to assess potential damage done to national security by Oswald’s defection.
Fred gave us the names of 3 former ONI/NIS officials, with whom he discussed the Oswald case in 1959 and 1960, to contact in the even we wanted to pursue further possible leads:
-CAPT Jack Johnson, USN (Ret.): “Head of NIS in 1960” – now in Florida, at (813) 859-4574;
- Sherman Bliss, SA in 1959: Now in San Diego, at (619) 451-1370
-Winston Kuehl, SA in 1959: Now in San Diego, at (619) 693-0945.
Fred brought numerous documents with him – we copied them all, and need to review them.
Upon initial examination, none of them appear to be “119” reports from 1959 or 1960 – the few Oswald “119s” are post-assassination. Most, or all, of the documents he provided appear to be open already – we will check first, before inquiring with ONI. Many of them appear to be redacted FOIA releases from 1975, 1977, etc.
He said he had seen 8-10 “119” reports after the assassination, as well. END