|Tom Shoemaker in an e-mail to
other interested researchers.
Here is a summary of what I saw and heard:
Bill Donaldson seemed
to serve two roles: master of ceremonies and
made at the beginning. Fred Mann was mentioned. Tom
Stalcup, Graeme Sephton and David Neal of FIRO were there. Of
Reed Irvine was up front. Admirals Mark Hill and Thomas Moorer
there. James Sanders was there. Eyewitnesses Ed Wagner and Bill
Gallagher were also introduced. Capt. Mundo was introduced.
was introduced at some point.
Tom Stalcup led off,
and made a very good presentation. He started by
showing that the CIA/NTSB "headless climb" theory is not supported
the radar data in any way, and is, in fact, refuted by the radar
Then he described his new radar data and his analysis of it.
I think it
was very clear what he was saying. He had both transparency plots
data and an animation to show the data over a span of time (I
runs from about 15 minutes before the disaster to 15 minutes
disaster) I think any FIRO member who saw the presentation would
that Tom did a great job in sharing his information. Graeme spoke
brief time and added some information about the radar data and
Bill Donaldson spoke
next. He mentioned some of the topics we already
have heard about, like the Cigarette boat story and the FBI Operations
Manual found in one of the trawlers that was being used to look
Stinger parts. He spoke in some detail about the loss of the
the upper surfaces of the left wing of TWA Flight 800 and what
might mean, and also about the condition of the wrecked common
of metal between the CWT and the nearest fuel tank on the left
stated it means the wing tank exploded before the CWT.
He also went over
the topic of the flammability of the fuel aboard TWA Flight 800.
The things that interested
me most about Bill's presentation was his
description of the comments made by a pathologist named Dr. Shanahan.
said that one would assume that if the CWT exploded with the
claimed by officials, the condition of the bodies of passengers
atop the CWT would show evidence of burns, but they do not. Also,
refuting the "headless climb" scenario himself, Bill told an
about the commander of the NOAA ship Rude, which was on the crash
soon after the disaster. He said the radar information from TWA
800's known position and direction and speed were entered into
computer on the Rude, and extrapolated for a simple impact point.
the Rude went to that point, wreckage was immediately found:
of the story being that the wreckage fell ballisticly rather
wound up in a different place because it climbed or soared before
Bill also said he has
knowledge that the Capt. of the aircraft carrier
John F. Kennedy told his crew that he had learned TWA Flight
been hit by shoulder-fired missiles, and that they might be going
He also said he has
knowledge that Pres. Clinton personally ordered a
ship to the crash site at maximum speed in order to arrive and
divers from the N.Y. Police Department from getting there first.
Eyewitness Ed Wagner
told of being in a boat just inside the western
jetty at Moriches Inlet, and seeing a white-silver flare rise
sky. He seemed very confident he had seen the flare go up and
Eyewitness Bill Gallagher
was aboard his trawler when the disaster took
place. He thinks he was 10-13 miles from the disaster scene.
thought he saw a flare rising into the sky. Near the end of the
climb, the flare made a course change to a more vertical angle,
there was an white explosion. Then he saw two pieces of what
probably the aircraft separate and fall in different arcs (He
two arcs looked "like the McDonald's sign"). From this, he expected
parts that fell to be located in a certain arrangement. Later,
descriptions of the actual debris field confirmed his inferences
how major parts of the wreckage which he thought he saw falling
In the Q/A period,
the point was made that neither witness Wagner nor
Gallagher, both in boats, rushed to the disaster scene after
what they saw. (the point being that the reason they didn't rush
scene may be the same for the "mystery boats" in the radar data).
Ed's explanation was
that he didn't have a radio on his boat. He
thought maybe there was some kind of a fishing tournament starting
he saw many boats leaving Moriches Inlet and heading out to sea.
was that even if you saw what he saw, you would be
thinking, "What was THAT?" He said he did have a radio
on his boat, and
immediately after the fireball he heard people on the radio yelling
about flares, etc. but it wasn't until a bulletin came on his
television 15 -20 minutes later that he understood what had happened.
made the good point that more radar data should be analyzed to
the "mystery boats" did more than 15-20 minutes after the disaster.
I thought the comments
by Adms. Hill and Moorer were great. I think
both were adamant that there is no way the Navy, in a planned
monitored exercise, could shoot down a civilian aircraft. Adm.
tried to make this additional point several times: but if there
special forces, CIA, etc. involved in covert training activities
missions, all bets are off: secrecy could be clapped down and
maintained. Both seemed to strongly believe a missile hit TWA
800. Both seemed to say if the Navy was involved in the disaster,
unlikely that any low-ranking seaman would come forward as a
"whistle-blower" Their message was that bad things happen to
It was impossible to
tell how many people were in attendance. There were
both friendly and hostile questions from the audience. A journalist
named McKenna wanted to prove warning area W-105 wasn't activated
9 PM. James Sanders argued it was activated at 8 PM.
Kelly O'Meara's article
for "Insigh"t magazine on the new radar data
Tom spoke about is already on the web at : http://www.insightmag.com/
I liked Tom's
challenge to the press: if the press gets more of the
radar data (like they should), he will analyze it and plot it
The entire press conference
lasted approximately 2 hours, 50 minutes. I
do not intend this summary above to convey all the points made
press conference. But for me, these were the main points. Apologies
advance if I misunderstood something at the conference and
misrepresented it here...such errors are unintended.