Fort Worth

JFK conspiracy theorist and UFO author Jim Marrs has died

Jim Marrs was an author, college professor and journalist.
Jim Marrs was an author, college professor and journalist.

Jim Marrs, the author whose book Crossfire: The Plot to Kill Kennedy helped inspire the Oliver Stone movie JFK, died of a heart attack Wednesday at his Wise County home.

Marrs, 73, who worked as a Star-Telegram reporter between 1968 and 1980, didn’t just write about John F. Kennedy. He also authored books about everything from UFOs to population control.

Marrs also taught courses on the JFK assassination and UFOs at the University of Texas at Arlington before retiring in 2007.

In a 2003 Star-Telegram article, Marrs said lawyers, teachers, even an official with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission had taken his classes.

“They, like myself, have a natural and, I think healthy, questioning attitude about all this,” Marrs said. “What I tell people is, ‘Don’t come here expecting me to have all the answers.’ 

But Marrs left no doubt that he believed that humans weren’t the only intelligent life in the universe.

“There’s definitely something out there in the air,” he said. “But I don’t think there’s anything to fear here.”

Marrs was born Dec. 5, 1943, in Fort Worth. He earned a degree in journalism from North Texas State (now the University of North Texas) and attended graduate school at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. In recent years, he had been a fixture on the overnight talk show Coast to Coast, and he also appeared on Alex Jones’ Infowars.

His wife, Carol, said they met on a blind date while going to college in Denton. They have been inseparable since that first date.

“I just remember how funny he was,” Carol Marrs said. “I don’t think about the conspiracy part, although he was an excellent teacher. His mission in life was to pursue the truth.”

While he was known for all of his publications, Marrs was also an avid Civil War re-enactor and a World War II history buff.

“He had his own cannon and, on the Fourth of July, we would fire it off,” Carol Marrs said. “You can do that when you live in the country. But he was almost a pacifist. He didn’t believe we should be in a war unless you were defending your home.”

Among his books were “Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy,” which reached The New York Times paperback nonfiction bestseller list. Other titles include: “Alien Agenda” (1997); “Rule by Secrecy” (2000); “The Terror Conspiracy Revisited” (2007); “The Rise of the Fourth Reich” (2008); “The Trillion-Dollar Conspiracy” (2010); “Our Occulted History” (2013); “Population Control” (2015); and his last book, “The Illuminati” (2017).

Survivors include two daughters, Cathryn Lafitte and Jayme Castle, as well as three grandchildren.

A private service is planned, according to Alexander’s Midway Funeral Home in Springtown, but Carol Marrs said the family is planning a gathering at their Wise County home next month.

Bill Hanna: 817-390-7698, @fwhanna