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Long Lost JFK Footage Resurfaces

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WASHINGTON (CNN, Nov. 21) -- Nearly 33 years after President Kennedy's assassination, a three-minute amateur film showing Kennedy's trip to Texas on Nov. 21-22 is being publicly released today for the first time. (3.5M QuickTime movie or 864K QuickTime movie)

The film, by Kennedy aide Dave Powers, does not show the assassination of the president.

Powers, who was riding in a Secret Service car directly behind the presidential limousine during the Dallas motorcade, ran out of film before the motorcade entered Dealey Plaza where the shots were fired that killed the president.

But the color film does show Kennedy at the beginning of the ill-fated motorcade. The film is being released by the Assassination Records Review Board, mandated by federal law to identify, secure, and make available all records related to Kennedy's assassination.

Mr. Powers worked for Kennedy beginning in 1946 when Kennedy was elected to Congress, and was a special assistant to the president when he accompanied Kennedy to Dallas in November of 1963.

"I started taking pictures when we left Love Field," Powers told CNN Wednesday. He took his last pictures at 12:17 p.m., the time identifiable on a clock behind Mrs. Kennedy, he said. Kennedy was shot about 15 minutes later, at about 12:30 p.m., he said.

Powers said he lost the film, but that interest in it was renewed recently when the Assassination Records Review Board saw an article Powers had written in an old Life magazine. The article included a "couple of clips" from the film, and the review board wanted to know where the pictures came from.

That prompted a search of papers that Powers had left to the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum, where Powers had served as curator for 30 years before retiring two years ago. "It was in with all my papers and we could never find the damned thing," he said.

The film eventually will become part of the JFK Collection at the National Archives. Powers, 84, is retired and lives in Arlington, Mass. Friday is the 33rd anniversary of Kennedy's assassination.


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