The meeting of two assassins in November 1963
Nightclub owner Jack Ruby emerged from a crowd of police and reporters to fatally shoot Lee Harvey Oswald on live television just two days after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Several government investigations concluded that 50 years ago, Oswald shot the 35th president of the United States as he was preparing to run for a second term. Officials spent hours questioning Oswald in connection with the assassination, which he supposedly carried out from the sixth-floor window of the Texas School Book Depository on Nov. 22, 1963.
Ruby killed the alleged assassin with a single shot from a revolver inside the basement of the Dallas police headquarters on Nov. 24, 1963. Ruby, who admitted to acting out of disdain over Kennedy’s sudden and tragic death, approached Oswald as officials were transferring him to a more secure county jail.
Police immediately took Ruby into custody. Some Americans viewed him as a hero, but he was ultimately charged with first-degree murder. Ruby previously operated Dallas strip joints and dance clubs, and he had connections to organized crime.
Oswald entered the Marine Corps when he was 17, and he eventually defected to the former Soviet Union in 1959, allegedly to escape his mother, according to Peter Savodnik’s book,The Interloper. Oswald met his wife, Marina, and the couple married there.
“The KGB thought he was nuts,” Savodnik said recently during an interview with msnbc. “He didn’t like it, but that was the idea, that he was going to find himself. He was going to become the man he wanted to be.”
For the past five decades conspiracy theories have abounded around the world, ranging from doubts that Oswald acted alone to suspicions that the KGB, FBI, CIA, Cuba’s Fidel Castro, and then-U.S. Vice President Lyndon Johnson were involved in the assassination. And some believe Ruby killed Oswald to prevent him from revealing a larger conspiracy.
But the official Warren Commission Report of 1964 declared that neither Oswald nor Ruby were part of a larger conspiracy to assassinate the president. Some people, of course, continue to dispute the findings.
Before his second trial, Ruby died of cancer, on Jan 3., 1967 at Parkland Hospital in Dallas where Oswald and Kennedy had both been pronounced dead.