1. What is the background to Prayer Man?
1. We believe in giving credit wherever it is due, so with that in mind, we have striven to obtain details of any previous investigation of this enigma. As far as it has been ascertained, the first discussion of the figure came in correspondence between Dick Sprague, Dick Bernabei and Harold Weisberg in 1968. That investigation ground to a halt due to their inability to obtain the original frame from NBC and they were left with a 7th generation copy. There are no known further discussions on it until Charles Wallace raised the issue in a google newsgroup in October, 2005. Sean Murphy first raised the subject at the Lancer Forum – unfortunately, the exact timeframe is not known due to the Lancer Forum no longer being available on the web. However, it was probably 2007 or 2008. This was around the time that Murphy had thoroughly reviewed Greg Parker’s work showing that the 2nd floor lunch room encounter between motorcycle cop Marrion Baker, Superintendent Roy Truly, and Lee Oswald was almost certainly fabricated, and that Oswald had been on the 1st floor and on the front steps at all relevant times. Murphy, being unable to find fault with this work, set about looking for photographic evidence to support it. He found what he sought in the frames from the Wiegman and Darnell films and dubbed the figure Prayer Man because of the apparent position of the hands. Murphy next took his research and tested it at forums favoring the government position. It stood up and walked through those valleys strengthened for the experience. Then in August 2013, renowned researcher and writer Bill Kelly started a thread at the JFK Education Forum titled “Oswald Leaving TSBD?” Sean entered this thread and despite moving on as of Nov 22, 2013, his work therein has become the standard reference for Prayer Man. 2,295 replies and 154 pages later (as of this date) it is still an active thread - though the research has largely shifted to the ROKC site. Since then, Stan Dane has put Murphy’s research together in book form, “Prayer Man: Out of the Shadows and into the Light” and Bart Kamp has made a video titled “Prayer Man: More Than Just a Fuzzy Picture”. Other related projects are currently in the works.
2. With regard to the assassination, many photos and still frames have been blown up, copied, contrasted and contorted in an effort to find police snipers, CIA agents, mafia hitmen and so on. “Badge Man” is an outstanding example of this type of study and is akin to seeing the shape of an elephant in a cloud, or a butterfly in a more traditional Rorschach Test. It is disingenuous to lump the study of Prayer Man into the same category. Whereas for example, Badge Man really is just a mass of pixels, and could be anything or nothing at all, Prayer Man is unmistakably a human figure. The debate should not be about whether it is just a mass of pixels, but on the identity of the individual.
3.Yes. But how likely is that? You probably have a better chance of being trampled by a herd of wildebeest in Central Park than of this being a female. The posture, clothing and hair all point to it being a male. Those pushing for this person to be accepted as a female, or to at least have the sex status thought of as indeterminable are doing so by employing manipulated images and overly suggestible minds. There is a clear agenda to bury the Prayer Man debate, partly for what it may lead to and partly out of spite toward those conducting this research.
4.It is theoretically possible, but not supported by either common sense or by any evidence whatsoever. It was a terrible viewing position and therefore not an attractive proposition for a street spectator to claim – especially given they would have needed to push through the crowd already on the steps in order to take up this position. Furthermore, each employee of the building was asked by the FBI if they had seen any strangers that day. None remembered any. Those same employees were also asked to give their own locations. Those answers, plus other photographic evidence, has been used to rule out every employee bar one – Lee Harvey Oswald.