The testimony of Tommy Bargas was taken at 11:35 a.m., on March 30, 1964, in the office of the U.S. attorney, 301 Post Office Building, Bryan and Ervay Streets, Dallas, Tex. by Mr. Albert E. Jenner, Jr., assistant counsel of the President's Commission. Robert T. Davis, assistant attorney general of Texas, was present.
Mr. JENNER. Mr. Bargas, do you swear that in the deposition I am about to take of you that you will tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Will you state your name, please?
Mr. BARGAS. Tommy Bargas, B-a-r-g-a-s [spelling].
Mr. JENNER. And where do you live?
Mr. BARGAS. 301 East Drew, Fort Worth, Tex.
Mr. JENNER. Mr. Bargas, did you receive recently a letter from Mr. Rankin, the general counsel for the Commission?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Is the letter asking you if you would appear and permit your deposition to be taken, with which was enclosed copies of Executive Order 11130, creating the Commission, and of Senate Joint Resolution 137, authorizing the President to appoint and create the Commission, and also a copy of the rules of procedure of the Commission for the questioning of witnesses by members of the staff of the Commission?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.


Mr. JENNER. I am Albert E. Jenner, Jr., one of the counsel on the legal staff of the Commission, and Mr. Robert Davis is here, who is a special assistant attorney general of the State of Texas, and is cooperating with us and we with him and the attorney general, in the investigation that the State of Texas is carrying on. Now, you appear voluntarily?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. And the Commission, as you know, from these papers enclosed is investigating the tragedy of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, and many people have had some contact with various circumstances and incidents involving persons who may or could have been involved in turn in that assassination, and we have information that you had some contact with a man known as Lee Harvey Oswald, and we would like to inquire of you about that contact. You live in Fort Worth--how long have you resided in Fort Worth?
Mr. BARGAS. I have lived in Fort Worth all my life.
Mr. JENNER. All of your life?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. You are a native Texan?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And born and reared in Texas?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And did you, during his lifetime, come to know a man by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald?
Mr. BARGAS. I only knew him when he went to work for Louv-R-Pak Weather Co.
Mr. JENNER. But you did have a contact--you came to know him?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes; I did.
Mr. JENNER. At some contact you came to know him, whatever the case might be?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. How long have you been employed by Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. I been employed with them ever since 1962.
Mr. JENNER. And does that include the year 1962?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. By whom were you employed during the year prior thereto?
Mr. BARGAS. Louv-R-Pak.
Mr. JENNER. L-o-u-v-R-P-a-k [spelling]. I take it, then, that somewhere along the line a company known as Louv-R-Pak merged into or associated with Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. That's right.
Mr. JENNER. And you, as an employee of Louv-R-Pak then became automatically an employee of Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Is Louv-R-Pak a division of the Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And tell us, at least in general, what is the business of Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. Leslie Welding Co. manufactures louvers and ventilators for attics, houses-commercial and residential.
Mr. JENNER. What was the business of Louv-R-Pak?
Mr. BARGAS. Louv-R-Pak is the same line.
Mr. JENNER. It was the same line?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. I use the present tense when I refer to Leslie Welding Co., that is, what is its business--was that that you have described its business in 1962?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. And thereafter as well, to the present time?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Now, tell me, if you will, your particular connection with first--Louv-R-Pak and then Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, I was at Louv-R-Pak just a regular employee, and then in Leslie Welding, after it was purchased by Leslie Welding Co.--Louv-R-Pak was--then, after a short time I became foreman down there.


Mr. JENNER. Foreman in the Louv-R-Pak division of the Leslie Welding Co.?
Mr. BARGAS. Right, sir.
Mr. JENNER. What kind of work was under your supervision and direction as a foreman?
Mr. BARGAS. As a foreman it was total supervision of the plant. In other words---assign men to their jobs and see that they carried them out.
Mr. JENNER. Did you do any hiring of people?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. And discharging of people?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER I take it that the making of these louvers involves welding and sheet metal work?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. What kind of work is that--is that forming, and cutting and tripping and punching?
Mr. BARGAS. Spot welding and resistance welding was all they use.
Mr. JENNER. Spot welding and resistance welding?
Mr. BARGAS. Resistance welding and spot welding is the same thing.
Mr. JENNER. Does the sheet metal come in size or do you have to form it in some fashion?
Mr. BARGAS. We have to form it in various different sizes to specifications called for.
Mr. JENNER. And then, the louvers are spot welded and placed--they are moved up and down in various directions, are they?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Does Leslie Welding Co. have any plants other than in Fort Worth?
Mr. BARGAS. It has one in Atlanta, Ga.
Mr. JENNER. Is its home office located here or in Atlanta, Ga.?
Mr. BARGAS. No, sir; it is located in Chicago.
Mr. JENNER. In Chicago proper or some suburb of Chicago?
Mr. BARGAS. In a suburb.
Mr. JENNER. Is that Melrose Park or Franklin Park?
Mr. BARGAS. Franklin Park.
Mr. JENNER. Have you ever been up there?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Are there any production facilities there at Franklin Park?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. That's near O'Hare Field?
Mr. BARGAS. It is near to O'Hare Field.
Mr. JENNER. And, near Mannheim Road--I think Mannheim Road bisects Franklin Park, doesn't it?
Mr. BARGAS. I'm not too familiar with it, but I did travel on Mannheim Road. I remember that, but I'm not too familiar with the area.
Mr. JENNER. Did someone by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald ever work for Leslie Welding Co. here in Fort Worth?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Did you have anything to do with that?
Mr. BARGAS. In what manner? In what respect?
Mr. JENNER. Well, did you hire him, for example?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, he came down--we called in for men at the Texas employment office and they sent him down and naturally he was interviewed.
Mr. JENNER. Did you do the calling in?
Mr. BARGAS. I don't do the calling in, no.
Mr. JENNER. You told somebody working for you or under your direction to call the Texas Employment Agency?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, the secretary called.
Mr. JENNER. At your direction, however?
Mr. BARGAS. Right.
Mr. JENNER. And what did you tell her you wanted in the way of an employee?


Mr. BARGAS. I wanted a suitable employee that we could train that had some sheet metal experience, that we could train--that was willing to learn, starting at a low grade.
Mr. JENNER When was this?
Mr. BARGAS. I do not know exactly the date.
Mr. JENNER. I have a date in my notes of July 17, 1962, does that approximate it?
Mr. BARGAS. That's approximately right.
Mr. JENNER. It was in 1962?
Mr. BARGAS. I believe it was.
Mr. JENNER. And it was in July sometime?
Mr. BARGAS. Sometime in July.
Mr. JENNER. Along about the middle of July? Is that correct?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes; somewhere around in there.
Mr. JENNER In response to this message that had been transmitted to the Texas State Employment Agency, somebody by the name of Lee Oswald came to your place of business, to the factory, and you had made it clear through your secretary, who called on your behalf, that you were seeking somebody who was going to start at the bottom, to be trained, that if he had some sheet metal experience that would be fine?
Mr. BARGAS. That's right.
Mr. JENNER. But, whoever this employee or prospective employee would be, would start at a low rate and it would be contemplated that he would be trained?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. Now, Lee Oswald came on the scene--do you recall your meeting with him?
Mr. BARGAS. No--not very distinctly--no.
Mr. JENNER. Do you relatively frequently have occasion to seek new employees?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. This was not out of the ordinary?
Mr. BARGAS. No, sir.
Mr. JENNER. It was just in the regular course of business?
Mr. BARGAS. Right.
Mr. JENNER. And neither the nature of the employment, nor the man himself in either respect--was there anything unusual or particular about it?
Mr. BARGAS. No--none whatever.
Mr. JENNER. And tell us about that meeting, to the extent you can recall it.
Mr. BARGAS. Well, it's pretty hard because I meet so many people that's come in and out.
Mr. JENNER. I appreciate that--it may be important to us, Mr. Bargas, that your recollection is exactly what it is, that this employment was just the usual, ordinary sort of thing and that he didn't impress you greatly--don't you be embarrassed at all--all we want to find out from you is what your personal recollection is and what you remember, that's all.
It may be just as important to us that you remember very little, because it was not extraordinary, as your remembering something particular about it. Give us what you now recall took place.
Mr. BARGAS. Well, the only thing that I remember taking place was him coming into the plant.
Mr. JENNER. And he came to see you--or he was directed to you?
Mr. BARGAS. He was directed to me, and he came in and I gave him an application to fill out and we talked and I gave him instructions of what I expected of the men when he came to be employed there.
Mr. JENNER. Would you tell us as best you can now recall that conversation--what you told him--what did you expect, what did you say to him that you expected?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, I have three basic rules that I go by---one, is that I expect a man to be there on time and I expect him, when he punches in in the morning to be prepared to work, and if he is going to be absent for any reason at all, I expect him to call in in the morning before 10 o'clock which is one of our company


rules, and then I went along stating what he would be doing, where he would be working----
Mr. JENNER. All right, tell us what you said to him, in substance.
Mr. BARGAS. What I said to him in substance probably was--I usually tell them, "You will be working in this department," and-----
Mr. JENNER. Which department?
Mr. BARGAS. The turbine department.
Mr. JENNER. The turbine department?
Mr. BARGAS. The turbine department, and that's another ventilator which we make, and this ventilator requires a little cutting to do with the shears, and he told me that he had had sheet metal experience while he was in the service.
Mr. JENNER. All right, go ahead.
Mr. BARGAS. And so----
Mr. JENNER. What kind of cutting--you say with the shears--is it a power-operated shears?
Mr. BARGAS. A power-operated shears.
Mr. JENNER. Go ahead.
Mr. BARGAS. And then after that, I put him to work.
Mr. JENNER. Now, I would like to stick to that beginning a little bit--do you recall what inquiries you made of him as to his immediate history, that is, did you inquire of him as to past positions, if any, he had held?
Mr. JENNER. When you talked with him, I take it from your answer that you did inquire of him as to what sheet metal work experience he had had, if any?
Mr. BARGAS. If any.
Mr. JENNER. And his response was--what did he say?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, he said he had had some when he was in the service and that's all, and he didn't give no full detail as to what he was doing or how he was doing it.
Mr. JENNER. And you didn't inquire?
Mr. BARGAS. No; I didn't.
Mr. JENNER. I take it, then, at that stage of the game it was your impression or your thought, since this was to be a low hourly rated employee, that you would soon find out if he had any experience?
Mr. BARGAS. Right, sir.
Mr. JENNER. And you intended to train him in any event?
Mr. BARGAS. Right.
Mr. JENNER. Now, do you have any recollection of his appearance on that occasion, how he was attired with respect to cleanliness, did he have a suit coat on, a jacket, or a T-shirt, or if you have no recollection, then just say you don't?
Mr. JENNER. This was just an employment in the ordinary course of business that you do frequently?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And nothing with respect to this man impressed you or now stands out?
Mr. JENNER. At this initial interview?
Mr. JENNER. Do you recall inquiring of him as to where he lived?
Mr. JENNER. As to whether he had a telephone or not?
Mr. JENNER. Was he married--did he have a family?
Mr. BARGAS. The only thing--he was married but he never stated--he never said what nationality his wife was or anything like that. As a matter of fact, he never--we never communicated that much. In other words, we didn't talk--we didn't communicate between each other that much.
Once or twice I tried to talk with him, you know, we usually try to find out how the employees are getting along, whether they like their jobs they are


working at and if not, then we try to place them in a different position, and I make them satisfactory and that way I feel that a man can put out more.
Mr. JENNER. That's right.
Mr. BARGAS. And so, I tried to talk to him once or twice and all I would get "yes", "no", and that was it, and as long as I gave him the job he went and done it as everybody else in the plant, so I didn't have no grudge on him or nothing at all. I assigned him a job and he done it and I was satisfied.
Mr. JENNER. He was a somewhat uncommunicative person?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes, sir.
Mr. JENNER. But this did not interfere with his work?
Mr. BARGAS. No, sir.
Mr. JENNER. As far as you were concerned, even though he was uncommunicative, he was doing his work and he wasn't causing any trouble, so as far as his personality was concerned, you let that pass?
Mr. BARGAS. It was satisfactory with me.
Mr. JENNER. What kind of an employee was he, or what is your impression and present recollection?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, as much as I can remember of the short time he was there, it was a very short time he was there--he was a good employee. I imagine if he pursued that trade, he might have come out to be a pretty good sheet metal man--I don't know.
Mr. JENNER. But at least that's your impression?
Mr. BARGAS. That's my impression.
Mr. JENNER. I take it he did not volunteer anything with respect to his past or his family or his current activities outside the plant?
Mr. JENNER. What were his relations, if any, with respect to other employees?
Mr. BARGAS. None whatever.
Mr. JENNER. Do you mean by that that he kept to himself?
Mr. BARGAS. Totally.
Mr. JENNER. Totally--what about lunch times--employees usually get together at lunch time?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, everybody used to get together over there except himself. He would take his lunch and move over to the side there and eat his lunch by himself and he didn't talk to nobody about nothing, so nobody ever even messed with him, I mean as far as that's concerned..
Mr. JENNER. What impression did you have as to whether he was indifferent to his work, happy with his work--what impression do you have as to his reaction to his work?
Mr. BARGAS. None that I can remember.
Mr. JENNER. Nothing stands out?
Mr. JENNER. Do you have any impression as to whether he ever sought to be particularly industrious or tried to impress you?
Mr. BARGAS. No; the only thing I can remember he just done his job--that's all.
Mr. JENNER. He was prompt, was he, in the mornings?
Mr. BARGAS. As far as I can remember he was there every day.
Mr. JENNER. And he had a good attendance record, as far as you can recall?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. Do you have any recollection of anybody employed at the plant with whom Oswald did or might have associated after work hours or on weekends?
Mr. JENNER. And as far as you observed, during the days of employment, he kept pretty much to himself anyhow?
Mr. BARGAS. That's right.
Mr. JENNER. Did you ever observe anything with respect to his temperament--was he quick tempered, was there any incident that occurred that would give you a basis for an opinion?
Mr. JENNER. How long did he work there, to the best of your recollection?


Mr. BARGAS. I believe it was up until September, if I'm not mistaken, somewhere right along in there.
Mr. JENNER. Would this serve to refresh your recollection, that he worked until on or about October 8th, 1962?
Mr. BARGAS. No; I don't remember.
Mr. JENNER. Could he have worked until October 8th?
Mr. BARGAS. It is possible.
Mr. JENNER. But your present recollection is more like sometime in the course of September when his employment was terminated?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. What were the circumstances respecting the termination of his employment?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, what happened is--he went home one day, not during working hours, but it was right after the regular working hours.
Mr. JENNER. After the regular quitting time?
Mr. BARGAS. After quitting time at 4:30, and he went home and he didn't give any indication of whether he was going to quit or he was going to leave or anything like that.
Mr. JENNER. You expected him back the next day?
Mr. BARGAS. I expected him back the next morning and if I'm not mistaken, it was Friday, and Monday he didn't show up, I believe it was; if I'm not mistaken--I can't place it, and so he didn't call in and he didn't have a phone, as far as I can remember, so I never tried to get in contact with him or anything like that, and I figured he may have someone to call in or something like that, so I just let it ride, and then he didn't show up the second day after that, so all I said then was, "Well, I imagine he quit because a line of guys had done the same thing."
In other words, a lot of them just never did show up and that's all that happened. They would come back on the following Friday or something like that and say, "I quit, I've got another job." That's what the other guys would say.
Well, he was different--when he left the only thing he done was he wrote in to the plant and told us where to send his check to. He said he was up there in Irving somewhere I--don't remember the address or exactly what place it was, but as far as I know that was it. I never had seen him since then and the last time I heard of him was when his name sounded off on the radio.
Mr. JENNER. Where were you then?
Mr. BARGAS. I was there at the plant.
Mr. JENNER. This was in the afternoon of November 22d?
Mr. BARGAS. Right.
Mr. JENNER. Of 1963?
Mr. BARGAS. Right.
Mr. JENNER. And you heard his name broadcast on the radio?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And that awakened your memory?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, it come to me---in other words--the name right there, it rang a bell--in other words, because I remember some of the names--in other words, when they say them, I can more or less remember them, and then I even said to myself, well, I wasn't too sure of it then, you know, because there are so many Oswalds, so when I got home that afternoon, I was watching the television and there they came with a flash picture of him and I remembered him.
Mr. JENNER. On the television?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. And the flash picture you saw was Lee Harvey Oswald who had been an employee under your supervision and direction?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes--he was the one that had been employed there.
Mr. JENNER. You recognized him?
Mr. BARGAS. I recognized him.
Mr. JENNER. And, did that excite you to look at other television showings to confirm your recollection that the man under arrest by the Dallas City Police was Lee Harvey Oswald, a former employee of Leslie Welding Company?
Mr. BARGAS. Well, I followed the whole thing pretty well. I mean--it wasn't that I was interested in knowing whether I knew the man, because it didn't impress


me very much of having known the man that done the deed that he did, but I did follow it pretty close and as I said, as I followed him more and more, I remembered him more and more.
Mr. JENNER. During the period of his employment, that was approximately a couple of months or a little more--more or less--did he evidence any disposition toward physical violence, quick temper, arguments with fellow employees, or anything of that nature?
Mr. BARGAS. None that I can remember.
Mr. JENNER. I show you Commission Exhibits 451 and 453 through 456, inclusive, and ask you to examine those photographs and tell me if the man depicted on those photographs, in your opinion, bears any resemblance to Lee Harvey Oswald?
Mr. BARGAS. [Examining exhibits referred to.] None of them.
Mr. JENNER. He does not?
Mr. JENNER. What about his skills, did he do a reasonably satisfactory job?
Mr. BARGAS. Yes.
Mr. JENNER. Mr. Bargas, I think that's about all the questions I have. I would like to ask you, however, this general question as to whether anything has occurred to you, any incident or anything else that has come to your mind that you think might be helpful to the Commission in its investigation of the assassination of President Kennedy?
Mr. JENNER. All right. You are privileged to read your deposition, if you wish to, and to sign it, if you wish to. It isn't required and you may waive it if you see fit--that is--forego it.
Miss Oliver will have it ready sometime during the week if you want to call in to Mr. Sanders' office, the United States Attorney's office, and come in and read it, you have a right to have a copy of your deposition if you wish to purchase one, and Miss Oliver will be quite willing to sell you one at whatever her rates are.
Do you have any preferences in this connection?
Mr. BARGAS. I would like to have one of those depositions--yes.
Mr. JENNER. When you call into Mr. Sanders and he will put you in touch with Miss Oliver and you can make arrangements with her for a copy, and I appreciate your coming in and regret any inconvenience to you, but you have been helpful to us.
Mr. BARGAS. Well, I'm glad I have. As far as I know--I don't know--as much as I knew about the man, I don't think I can tell you enough--as much as I thought I knew the man. If I had known anything like that about the man, he would have never been employed there.
Mr. JENNER. Well, so say we all.
Mr. BARGAS. But it's just one of those things.
Mr. JENNER. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.
Mr. BARGAS. All right.

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