I love a good mystery, don’t you? English mysteries are my favorite, set in the village with the usual list of characters as suspects, a Vicar, his ditsy wife who serves tea. The cottages have names like Rose and Bramble. The crime takes place in a paragraph or two, not much blood, the Inspector and his side-kick are smart and likable. Together, they find who did it. I have deliberately stereotyped a genre of mysteries I’m addicted to in order to contrast them with the mystery our country and Rear Admiral Leslie O. Stone lived through. At the time, he was Commander of the National Navel Medical Center (Bethesda Naval Hospital.)
Pictured here on the right is James Forrestal (February 15, 1892-May 22, 1949), the last Cabinet-level United States Secretary of the Navy and the first United States Secretary of Defense. The mystery revolves around this question….Was his fall from the 16th floor of Bethesda Medical Center truly the suicide of a trouble man, or the murder of a man who knew too much? Add the names of America’s two best-known and most powerful syndicated columnists, Drew Pearson and Walter Winchell, and the plot thickens. I spend several hours of fascinating research, immersed in this unsolved mystery. Here is a link to an article that mentions Dr. Stone’s testimony at the time of the investigation. Who Killed James Forrestal-Part 2, This is a lengthy article, but two shorter links are listed below.
This blog, Main Street Rocky Mount, continues to honor people who have made a difference in the community. In this latest series, we started with Memorial Hospital, and the doctors associated there. We find that Rear Admiral Stone had a seat at the table of history in the questionable death of James Forrestal. Dr. Stone exemplifies the American dream of success. He was born in Kittrel NC in 1895 in a house with a dirt floor, and ultimately he received an invitation from President Truman to the Whitehouse. About this mystery…..Dr. Stone told his son it was suicide, I believe it was murder. What say you? Leave a comment below if you have time to read the articles I have left links for.
NEXT: Part 3 – Dr. Leslie O. Stone – His Home and Garden in Rocky Mount