Whatever Happened To Marina Oswald? (2023)

For years, the widow of Lee Harvey Oswald has avoided cameras while she tries to live a quiet life in Rockwall, northeast of Dallas. But earlier this month, the Daily Mirror, the British tabloid, published pictures and video of the widow, now Marina Oswald Porter, as she walked out of a Walmart.

It’s the first time we’ve seen pictures of her in about 20 years.

In the spring of 1961, Lee Oswald met Marina Prusakova at a dance in Minsk, Belarus. Six weeks later, they were married at the home of her uncle, who worked for Soviet domestic intelligence. In October 1962, they moved to Dallas. By the fall of 1963, they were living with a woman, Ruth Paine, in Irving. Marina and Lee Oswald had two children, Rachel and June.

After her husband was killed, Marina married Kenneth Porter. She worked at an Army Navy Surplus Store in uptown. Eventually, she retired. She’s now in her early 70s.

As the 50th anniversary approaches, there’s renewed interest in Marina and the life she’s lived.

She has declined almost every interview request in 50 years. But we can glean details about her life based on the few interviews she has granted.

Her first interview

In her first television interview after her husband was killed, Marina Oswald spoke with KRLD-TV in Dallas. She said she visited his grave once or twice a week.

Did Lee Oswald kill the president?

“I don’t want to believe, but I have too much facts and facts tell me that Lee shot Kennedy,” she said.

She said she wanted to stay in Texas. She didn’t want to go back to Russia. Instead, she wanted to be an American citizen.

She thanked Americans who had sent her cards or donations.

(Video) Life since 1963 for Oswald's widow

“I want to thank you, American people, thank you from me and from my children,” she said. “American people have very big heart.”

She said she loved her husband.

“I loved Lee,” she said. “I’m sorry for him. Because he died very young.”

Here’s her first interview:

Marina Oswald First TV Interview Following Kennedy's Assassination

Changing her mind

But Marina Oswald later changed her opinion on whether Lee Oswald shot the president.

She said he was framed.

“I can’t in my mind, I could never put Lee against Kennedy,” she told a TV show, “Hard Copy,” in 1990. ”That never made sense to me.”

In 1993, in an interview with Tom Brokaw on NBC, Marina Oswald was even more adamant that her husband didn’t kill the president.

(Video) Lee Harvey Oswald's Wife's Life After The JFK Assassination

“He definitely did not fire the shots,” she said.

Here’s her interview with NBC in 1993:

Marina Oswald's Interview With NBC In 1993

Living with guilt

Marina Oswald said she thought of Nov. 22, 1963, every day.

“I feel like a hunchback, the stone that’s trapped on me, I cannot get rid of it,” she told “Hard Copy.”

She said she went through a range of emotions in the years following the assassination.

“Guilt, tried to prove that I am worthy of this country, tried to go backwards to please people. … ‘Please like me, I’m OK,’” she said.

“You learn to live not with the guilt that you shed because you are you and you’re not responsible for somebody’s doing, whether it’s your child or husband, gradually you get out of that guilty conscience,” she said. “I’m sympathetic to Lee, many times, but I’m also angry at him. He left me to swim in the dirty water. … So many times I questioned: ‘Did he use me as well? Does he really care for me at all?’”

But Lee was far from perfect.

(Video) Assassin's Widow - Marina Oswald - Travel Thru History

“It wouldn’t be proper for me to portray Lee as an angel or put a halo on his head,” she said in a 1988 interview.

Would Lee Harvey Oswald have wanted to go down as the man who killed JFK?

“I’ve asked myself the question 1,001 times,” she said during the 1988 interview. “I could never make myself comfortable, I never could buy the idea that Lee did not like or want to kill President Kennedy. Everything I learned about President Kennedy was good through Lee.”

Here’s part of her “Hard Copy” interview:

Marina Oswald Talks With 'Hard Copy'

Other family members speak

Marina's daughter, June Oswald, spoke with NBC in 1993 about her family.

“For 25 years, it was a subject we didn’t talk much around the house,” June Oswald said. “For 25 years it was a subject that we didn’t talk much around the house. Mom would try to keep us sheltered.”

But she insisted that the case regarding her dad’s involvement in the JFK killing isn’t closed.

“There’s a lot of information that we’d like to get – for me and my family,” she said.

(Video) September 13, 1978 - Marina Oswald appears before the House Select Committee on Assassinations

She wouldn’t say whether her dad killed JFK.

“If all the facts are out and say Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone assassin and he did it, then I will accept that,” she told NBC. “I’ll accept whatever the truth is.”

Here’s June Oswald on NBC’s “Today”:

June Oswald Talks With NBC's 'Today'

'Your daddy shot Kennedy'
In 1995, Texas Monthly interviewed Marina's other daughter, Rachel Oswald. In high school, when she was on the cheerleading squad, some people in the stands would shout: “Your daddy shot Kennedy” and “Good thing your daddy’s dead and buried.” But, mostly, she said, things were “pretty normal.”

Excerpts from Texas Monthly interview:
“I didn’t know my family was any different until I was about seven,” Rachel told Texas Monthly. “One day, my mother sat my sister and me down on our big green couch and told us that the man who had raised us as our father—our stepfather, Kenneth—was not, you know, our real father, and that our real father’s name was Lee Oswald and that he had, well, that he had been accused of killing the president of the United States.” Rachel smiled. “This helped explain why our school bus was sometimes followed by news teams, why our mailbox got shot at, why kids at school would ask, ‘Did your daddy shoot the president?’ At home we rarely discussed Lee. We were just trying to be a normal family. Every once in a while my mother would say that I looked like him, that I ate like him, that my legs looked like his legs, but for the most part we just didn’t talk about it.” … “I remember that my mother was very beautiful, that she had been written up in Life magazine. When we moved to Rockwall, which was much smaller than Richardson—people there lived on farming and football—everyone in town knew my mother. She was this delicate Russian beauty, widowed by a man who shot the president. We were of interest to people. For the most part, folks were nice, but they were always whispering things. I remember that helicopters flew over my mother’s wedding to my stepfather, that it was sort of a big deal in the news.”

CNN video: Life since 1963 for Marina Oswald

(Video) 1993 INTERVIEW WITH MARINA OSWALD PORTER

Life Since 1963 For Marina Oswald, Lee Harvey Oswald's Widow

KERA wants to hear your JFK stories and memories. Email us at jfk@kera.org. We may contact you or use your memory in an upcoming story.

FAQs

What happened to Mariana Oswald? ›

After the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963, Oswald was arrested. Two days later Oswald was shot and killed by nightclub owner Jack Ruby while still in police custody. Porter was under Secret Service protection until she finished giving testimony before the Warren Commission.

Did Marina Oswald become pharmacist? ›

In Minsk, Marina finally got a job in the pharmacy of a hospital. At the same time, she joined Komsomol, the Communist youth organization — a fairly common thing to do and something that her uncle, given his standing in the government apparatus, certainly would have expected her to do.

Did Oswald have children? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

Who did Marina Oswald marry? ›

Marina Oswald Porter

How old is Marina Oswald Porter? ›

Where is Oswald buried? ›

FORT WORTH — In a corner of the Shannon Rose Hill Cemetery, close to a chain-link fence that separates the living and the dead, a patch of ground has been worn free of grass by all who come to stare at one particular gravestone. With just a surname, the marker says it all: OSWALD.

How old was Oswald when he shot Kennedy? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald (October 18, 1939 – November 24, 1963) was a U.S. Marine veteran who assassinated John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, on November 22, 1963.
...
Lee Harvey Oswald
DiedNovember 24, 1963 (aged 24) Dallas, Texas, U.S.
Cause of deathGunshot wound
16 more rows

What did Robert Oswald do for a living? ›

He is the older brother of Lee Harvey Oswald, and a former Marine and salesman. Convinced that his brother was solely responsible for the assassination of John F.

What happened to the original pharmacist in superstore? ›

He never popped up again and was only mentioned once when Amy realized she was pregnant in Season 3, Episode 20. The only in-show explanation for him suddenly being gone is that his fragile ego was so damaged by the whole Amy situation that he left his job behind.

Is Netflix the pharmacist a true story? ›

Netflix's The Pharmacist tells the true story of Dan Schneider and his intense journey to stop drug abuse in the United States. The story begins as Schneider, a Louisiana-based pharmacist, solves the murder of his son, discovering a major twist in the process.

How old was Lee Harvey Oswald when he died? ›

Who is Oswald's sister? ›

Oswald's older sister, Lillian Murret, related that their family was poor but happy. Oswald's brothers, Charles and John, both died of tuberculosis as young men.

Is Oswald a Templar? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald (1939 – 1963) was a Templar sleeper agent, who is known to this day as the assassin of 35th American President John F.

Did Oswald have a brother? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

Was Oswald's wife Russian? ›

WASHINGTON, Nov. 23 —As seen by his Russian‐born wife, Lee Harvey Oswald became a changed man with a new and bewildering personlity when he returned to the United States in 1962.

Where was Kennedy shot at? ›

Was Lee Harvey Oswald married? ›

What happened to Lee Harvey Oswald? ›

At 12:20 p.m. EST, in the basement of the Dallas police station, Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin of President John F. Kennedy, is shot to death by Jack Ruby, a Dallas nightclub owner. On November 22, President Kennedy was fatally shot while riding in an open-car motorcade through the streets of downtown Dallas.

Who are the descendants of Lee Harvey Oswald? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

Who is Lee Harvey Oswald's daughter? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

How old was Jack Ruby when he died? ›

Where is Bonnie and Clyde's grave? ›

But it's been 84 years." So, Bonnie is buried at Crown Hill Memorial Park near Love Field. Nine miles away, Clyde was laid to rest at Western Heights Cemetery in West Dallas.

What were JFK's last words? ›

Nellie Connally, the First Lady of Texas, turned to Kennedy, who was sitting behind her, and commented, "Mr. President, you can't say Dallas doesn't love you". Kennedy's reply – "No, you certainly can't" – were his last words.

Why was JFK Casket closed? ›

Jacqueline Kennedy declared that the casket would be kept closed for the viewing and funeral. The shot to President Kennedy's head left a gaping wound, and religious leaders said that a closed casket minimized morbid concentration on the body. Mrs.

Who was the youngest Kennedy? ›

Their youngest, Patrick Joseph "P. J." Kennedy, went into business and served in the Massachusetts state legislature from 1884 to 1895. P. J. and Mary Augusta Hickey were the parents of four children.

What did Lee Harvey Oswald say to his brother? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

How much did zapruder get for his film? ›

The following day (November 24), Life purchased all rights to the film for a total of $150,000 (approximately $1,328,000 today). The night after the assassination, Zapruder said that he had a nightmare in which he saw a booth in Times Square advertising "See the President's head explode!"

Was Oswald schizophrenic? ›

The prosecution asserts that Oswald committed the crime for political reasons based in his Marxist beliefs, while his attorney presents an insanity defense, claiming that he had suffered from untreated paranoid schizophrenia since adolescence.

Was Elias a serial killer in Superstore? ›

Elias is revealed as the "foot killer" in the series finale.

Why was Myrtle written off Superstore? ›

In real life, actress Linda Porter died in September 2019.

However, in September, Linda Porter — the actress who played Myrtle on Superstore — died following a long battle with cancer, Deadline reported. She was 86, and had appeared in 35 episodes of the NBC series.

Why did Glenn resign Superstore? ›

Embezzlement. Glenn is stepping down as store manager, reducing his role to floor worker in order to have more time to spend at home with his family. He gives the same heartfelt speech over and over (improving each time according to Amy) in order to make sure as many customers as possible hear him. Aw, Glenn.

Is Dr Jacqueline Cleggett still alive? ›

Cleggett, currently in her mid-50s, lives in an apartment in East Baton Rouge, according to public records. She has almost entirely disappeared from the public eye – aside from her interview in "The Pharmacist."

Is OxyContin still prescribed? ›

OxyContin, a trade name for the narcotic oxycodone hydrochloride, is a painkiller available in the United States only by prescription. OxyContin is legitimately prescribed for relief of moderate to severe pain resulting from injuries, bursitis, neuralgia, arthritis, and cancer.

Who blew the whistle on Purdue Pharma? ›

Bruce Boise, a former Cephalon sales rep, alleged that the company was illegally marketing Actiq, a powerful fentanyl lollipop, for general pain.

How old was Kennedy when he died? ›

As their vehicle passed the Texas School Book Depository Building at 12:30 p.m., Lee Harvey Oswald allegedly fired three shots from the sixth floor, fatally wounding President Kennedy and seriously injuring Governor Connally. Kennedy was pronounced dead 30 minutes later at Dallas' Parkland Hospital. He was 46.

How long did Lee Harvey Oswald live in the Soviet Union? ›

A former U.S. Marine who lived in the Soviet Union for almost 3 years, Oswald was first arrested for the murder of police officer J. D. Tippit (1924-1963), who had been shot on a Dallas street shortly after Kennedy was killed.

Which Kennedy's were assassinated? ›

Who is buried next to Lee Harvey Oswald? ›

Or, more accurately, NICK BEEF. For the last 15 years, this curious name has vexed the obsessive assassination buffs who make regular pilgrimages to the Oswald plot here in Fort Worth. That is because a pinkish granite marker suddenly appeared beside the assassin's grave sometime in 1997. And all it said was Nick Beef.

Did Lee Harvey Oswald have a brother? ›

Lee Harvey Oswald

Who was the first person to be buried alive? ›

Accidental burial. According to a popular legend recorded by Joannes Zonaras and George Kedrenos, two 11th-century and 12th-century Byzantine Greek historians, the 5th century Roman emperor Zeno was buried alive in Constantinople after becoming insensible from drinking or an illness.

Where is JFK buried? ›

Is the husband always buried on the left? ›

Typically, the husband is buried on the left, whereas the wife should be on the right, as you're standing at their feet. The position isn't ordinary, and it's the same that couples have while they're getting married. In some cemeteries, the tradition hasn't disappeared, and it's the most common for couples.

How old was Lee Harvey Oswald when he joined the Marines? ›

279 The attempt failed, and, according to his mother's testimony, Lee spent the next year reading and memorizing the "Marine Manual," which he had obtained from Robert and "living to when he is age 17 to join the Marines."

Does Oswald have a sister? ›

New Orleans and Dallas

Oswald's older sister, Lillian Murret, related that their family was poor but happy.

Videos

1. Fight over Lee Harvey Oswald's crumbling casket
(USA TODAY)
2. February 7, 1964 - Marina Oswald Press Conference following Warren Commission hearing
(HelmerReenberg)
3. NEWS CONFERENCE WITH MARINA OSWALD (FEBRUARY 7, 1964)
(David Von Pein's JFK Channel)
4. The Last Days of Lee Harvey Oswald: A Conversation with Ruth Paine
(SixthFloorMuseum)
5. Marguerite Oswald interview after the publication of the Warren Report
(HelmerReenberg)
6. Marina Oswald Talks Part 3
(Sherlock G.)
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