The Confession of Secret Service Agent Clint Hill

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

The 8 agents involved in "The Kennedy Detail" documentary


Jerry Blaine was born in Boise, Idaho and served in the Korean War. After the war, he graduated from University of Colorado and commissioned by the U.S. Secret Service to work on the protection detail for President Dwight D. Eisenhower. When John F. Kennedy was elected in November 1960, Special Agent Blaine was immediately transferred to the President-elect detail and, for the next three years, traveled with President Kennedy all over the world — through Europe and Central America, from Hyannis Port to Palm Beach — and the occasional weekend at Bing Crosby's home in California.

In 1964, Jerry Blaine resigned from the Secret Service.


Toby Chandler was born in Groesbeck, Texas and worked on Texas oilfields as a teenager. Chandler was an expert marksman at Texas A&M and later served in U.S. Army Intelligence Corps. Chandler was commissioned by the Los Angeles field office of U.S. Secret Service in 1959 and transferred to Washington field office in January 1961. Special Agent Chandler worked the Inauguration and joined President Kennedy's Detail in March of 1961. On November 22, 1963, SA Toby Chandler was giving the commencement address at the Secret Service School — he had just finished training with a Special Forces/Secret Service task force. That afternoon, SA Chandler answered phones at the White House and handled security for the Speaker of the House, John McCormick.

In 1980, Toby Chandler retired from the Secret Service as Assistant Special Agent in Charge, Houston, Texas.


David Grant was born in Chicago, Illinois, a Korean War Veteran and graduate of Iowa Wesleyan University. In 1957, the Secret Service commissioned Special Agent Grant to work the Chicago and Denver field offices, as well as the Children's Detail for President Eisenhower. Special Agent Grant joined the Kennedy Detail shortly after the election. SA Grant assisted SA Win Lawson with the Dallas advance and was stationed at the Trade Mart at the time of the assassination. During his career, SA Grant served Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and Vice Presidents, Rockefeller, and Mondale.

In 1980, David Grant retired from the Secret Service as Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Vice Presidential Division.


Clint Hill was born in North Dakota, served in the U.S. Army Counter Intelligence Corps and graduated from Concordia College. Hill's first assignment with the U.S. Secret Service was in the Denver office, protecting President Eisenhower's mother-in-law. Special Agents Clint Hill and Jerry Blaine were transferred from the Eisenhower Detail to the President-Elect Detail in November 1960. Hill went immediately to work with Mrs. Kennedy and spent the Inauguration with Caroline and the infant John Jr. He also accompanied Mrs. Kennedy on trips abroad, including Italy, Morocco, Greece, France, India, and Pakistan. Hill was promoted to Special Agent in Charge (SAIC) of the First Lady's Detail during the Pakistan trip. On November 22, 1963, SAIC Hill dove onto the Presidential limo and to Mrs. Kennedy's aid moments after shots were fired in Dealey Plaza. SAIC Hill continued to lead Mrs. Kennedy's protective detail until November 1964.

In 1975, Clint Hill retired from the Secret Service as Assistant Director of Special Forces.


Paul Landis grew up in Worthington, Ohio, and earned a degree in geology from Ohio Wesleyan University. After college, Landis signed up with the Air National Guard and joined the Secret Service field office in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1959. Special Agent Landis' first protection assignment was with the Eisenhower grandchildren, then Landis was transferred to the Children's Detail early in President Kennedy's administration, followed by the First Lady's Detail with Special Agent in Charge Clint Hill. Along with Special Agent Tom Wells and Special Agent in Charge Clint Hill, Special Agent Landis often traveled with Mrs. Kennedy and her children to the family's homes in Rhode Island, Florida, Virginia and Massachusetts.

Paul Landis left the Secret Service shortly after President Kennedy's assassination.


Win Lawson grew up in western New York and graduated from the University of Buffalo. In 1950, Lawson joined the Army Counter Intelligence Reserves and served two years as an investigator on active duty. In 1959, the Secret Service commissioned Lawson as Special Agent. Special Agent Lawson attended Treasury School and Secret Service School, and in 1961 was transferred to the White House Detail. SA Lawson served under Presidents Kennedy & Johnson, and Vice Presidents Humphrey & Agnew before being transferred to Secret Service Headquarters in various jobs.

Win Lawson retired in 1981 as Deputy Assistant Director of Inspection.


Ron Pontius was born and raised in Chicago and graduated from Loyola University of Chicago. He served in the US Army during the Korean War and joined the US Secret Service in the Chicago field office in 1958. In late 1959 he was transferred to the White House Detail during the Eisenhower administration. Special Agent Pontius planned many advances for the President and Mrs Kennedy, including her trip in 1962 to Rome, India, and Pakistan, and the Houston advance during the first family's visit to Texas in 1963. He continued his career at the White House under Presidents Johnson, Nixon, and Ford, as the Assistant Special Agent in Charge.

In 1976 he was assigned as the Agent in Charge of the former President Nixon's Detail in San Clemente, California where he ended his career in 1980.


Tom Wells grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, served in the U.S. Coast Guard and graduated from Florida State University. In 1959, the U.S. Secret Service hired Tom Wells; he worked as a Special Agent in the Oklahoma City, Jacksonville, and Miami Field Offices before being assigned full time to the First Lady/Family Detail. SA Wells accompanied Mrs. Kennedy and her children on frequent trips to family homes in Florida, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Virginia. SA Wells spent November 22, 1963 at the White House with Caroline and John Jr. Along with SAIC Clint Hill, SA Wells remained on the protective duty for Mrs. Kennedy and her children through September 1964.

Tom Wells retired as the Special Agent in Charge of the Birmingham Field Office in 1981.

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