WHOA! A recently declassified interview with Brigadier General Godfrey McHugh, President Kennedy’s military aide on his fateful trip to Dallas in 1963, contains some shocking details about LBJ in the hours after Kennedy’s head was blown off. Seems Ole Burlap Britches was convinced that whoever killed Kennedy would soon be coming for him, so he did what most of us would probably do: hid in the bathroom of Air Force One’s presidential bedroom and sobbed hysterically.
In a post for HuffPo, historian Steven M. Gillon discloses McHugh’s shocking revelations about Lyndon Johnson, generally thought of as being a big, Texas badass. After President Kennedy’s body had been loaded onto Air Force One, everyone was ready to get the fuck out of Dallas, but there was one problem…nobody knew where LBJ was and he’d ordered the pilots to keep the plane on the ground, so McHugh went looking for him:
According to the newly declassified transcript, Mrs. Kennedy was becoming desperate to leave. “Mrs. Kennedy was getting very warm, she had blood all over her hat, her coat…his brains were sticking on her hat. It was dreadful,” McHugh said. She pleaded with him to get the plane off the ground. “Please, let’s leave,” she said. McHugh jumped up and used the phone near the rear compartment to call Captain James Swindal. “Let’s leave,” he said. Swindal responded: “I can’t do it. I have orders to wait.” Not wanting to make a scene in front of Mrs. Kennedy, McHugh rushed to the front of the plane. “Swindal, what on earth is going on?” The pilot told him that “the President wants to remain in this area.”
McHugh, like most members of the Kennedy entourage, did not know that Johnson was onboard. They believed that the new president was on his own plane flying back to Washington. If LBJ was on the plane, McHugh wanted to see for himself. Since he had not seen Johnson in the aisle — and at 6’4″ Johnson would be tough to miss — McHugh assumed that he must then be in the bedroom. When he checked there Johnson was nowhere to be seen. The only place on the plane he had not inspected was the bathroom in the presidential bedroom.
What McHugh claimed to have witnessed next was shocking. “I walked in the toilet, in the powder room, and there he was hiding, with the curtain closed,” McHugh recalled. He claimed that LBJ was crying, “They’re going to get us all. It’s a plot. It’s a plot. It’s going to get us all.'” According to the General, Johnson “was hysterical, sitting down on the john there alone in this thing.”
Now, Gillon goes on to say that McHugh did not like LBJ, so it’s possible he made up a story to make him look like a huge pussy for posterity, but Generals don’t lie, do they?