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Dr. John K. Lattimer, 92; urologist, ballistics expert on JFK evidence

May 15, 2007|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Dr. John K. Lattimer, 92, a renowned urologist and ballistics expert who was chosen by President Kennedy's family to examine evidence in his assassination, died Thursday at a hospice near his home in Englewood, N.J.

A professor and chairman of the urology department at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons for 25 years, Lattimer was known for helping establish pediatric urology as a discipline and developed a cure for renal tuberculosis.

As a ballistics expert, Lattimer reportedly was the first nongovernmental expert to examine X-rays, color photos and black-and-white negatives made during Kennedy's autopsy.

The images, Lattimer told the New York Times, "eliminate any doubt completely" about the validity of the Warren Commission's conclusion that Lee Harvey Oswald fired all the shots that hit the president.

During World War II, Lattimer treated hundreds of casualties as an Army doctor during the Normandy invasion. As part of the Army medical team at the Nuremberg trials, he treated high-ranking Nazi officials and later wrote the book "Hitler's Fatal Sickness and Other Secrets of the Nazi Leaders."

Lattimer, who was born in Mount Clemens, Mich., and graduated from Columbia University in 1935, until recently housed a major collection of antique military artifacts in his 30-room home.

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