The Clay Shaw trial testimony of Mrs. Nicholas Tadin

1426 (30)
February 27, 1969
MRS. NICHOLAS M. TADIN, after first being duly sworn by The Minute Clerk as a witness for the State in Rebuttal, was examined and testified as follows:
Q: Would you state your full name for the record, Mrs. Tadin?
A: Mrs. Matilda Tadin.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, have you ever testified in a trial before?
A: No, sir.
Q: I ask you just to relax and try to answer the questions and to speak directly into the microphone if you would.
THE COURT: Let me further explain, Mrs. Tadin, that if a question is put to you either by the District Attorney or the Defense and it requires what they would call a "Yes" or "No," you have a right under the law to explain your answer, so if you wish to say yes or no and you wish to be further heard on it, to explain your answer, just put your hand up and tell them you wish to explain your answer.
THE WITNESS: Thank you.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, is your husband Nicholas Tadin?
A: Yes.
Q: Is that the gentleman that preceded you on the witness stand in this case?
A: Yes.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, where do you live now?
A: New Orleans, Lurline Street.
Q: You have any children, Mrs. Tadin?
A: Two boys.
Q: And what are their ages now?
A: 20 and 14.
Q: Do either one or both of these boys have any infirmities at all?
A: Deafness.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, in the year 1964 were either of your boys taking any flying lessons?
A: Yes.
Q: Which boy was it?
A: The oldest one.
Q: Is that the one that's 20 now?
A: Yes.
Q: And from whom was he taking flying lessons?
A: Dave Ferrie.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, I'm going to show you a picture which I have identified for purposes of this trial as State-3 and ask you if you recognize the man in this picture?
A: Dave Ferrie.
Q: Is that the man who was giving your son instructions in flying?
A: Yes.
Q: While your son was taking these lessons did you have occasion to see Dave Ferrie very often?
A: I made it my business to be out there practically every afternoon at the time he took a lesson.
Q: Where would he take his lesson?
A: The New Orleans Airport.
Q: The Lakefront Airport?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: Now, Mrs. Tadin, in the summer of 1964 did you have occasion to be at the Lakefront Airport with your husband and your son at one time when he was to take a lesson?
A: Yes.
Q: On this occasion, Mrs. Tadin, did you have occasion to see this man I am pointing to here (indicating Defendant Shaw)?
A: Yes, I did.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, can you approximate when that was, what month?
A: It was the summer of '64, the latter part of the summer.
Q: I'm sorry, go ahead.
A: So I can explain myself, we were out there and we were waiting for Dave to come, and he was heading towards us and I noticed a gentleman with Dave and I passed the comment to my husband that it was a distinguished-looking man with Dave and my husband said, "Oh, look, who is with Dave."
MR. DYMOND: I object, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Your Husband made a reply and what did you do as a result of what he told you?
Q: Who is the Dave you are referring to?
A: What?
Q: Who is the Dave you were referring to?
A: Dave Ferrie.
Q: And who is the man that you said was with Dave Ferrie, is that the man you identified just now?
A: Yes.
Q: Did you see from what direction they came?
A: They came out the hanger and we were standing in this direction and he was coming towards us from the right and we were waiting to see Dave Ferrie.
Q: Did you have occasion to speak with him?
A: After the gentleman left, Dave Ferrie, he came towards us.
Q: Did you say anything to him?
A: No, my husband spoke to him.
Q: Did you have occasion to see where the Defendant Shaw went after he left you?
A: I didn't pay any attention. He walked over and went off.
Q: Were you concentrating on anyone at this time?
A: I was concentrating on Dave Ferrie 'cause we went out there to speak with him.
Q: Had you been out to the airport many times prior to this, prior to this occasion?
A: Yes, yes, many times.
Q: Do you recall -- I think you testified at the time that the Defendant and Ferrie were coming out of the hangar, is that correct?
A: Yes.
Q: Do you recall how close together they were or how far apart they were?
A: I would say Dave was just a little, about this much in front and that is when I noticed and my husband told me who he was.
Q: Who was?
A: Mr. Shaw.
Q: Had you seen Mr. Shaw prior to that occasion?
A: No, sir, I had not.
Q: Did you make any comment to your husband at the time you saw the Defendant Shaw?
A: Yes, I did.
Q: What was that?
A: My husband told me who he was and --
MR. DYMOND: I object and I ask that the witness be instructed not to repeat what someone told her.
THE WITNESS: I asked my husband.
THE COURT: This is a technical legal objection and you cannot state what your husband told you but you can state what you did as a result of that.
THE WITNESS: Okay. I said "Oh, no."
Q: Did you say anything else?
A: I said "Oh, no."
Q: This was in response to a statement?
A: That my husband made and that was my response.
MR. ALCOCK: I tender the witness.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, you say this was in the summer of '64?
A: About the latter, it was warm so the latter part of August, it may have been sooner 'cause I can't say what day or time it was.
Q: Did you and your husband then have occasion to be out at the airport on that occasion?
A: Yes, we did.
Q: Was anyone else with you besides you two?
A: I think my son or he was already out there, I think he had a lesson but we always made it our point to be out there with him.
Q: Do you remember it was the occasion that your son was out there already or did he go with you?
A: I don't remember whether we went out there or he was with us.
Q: Now you say you saw Dave Ferrie come out of a building?
A: Out the hangar.
Q: And Mr. Shaw was about this far behind him.
A: Dave Ferrie was in the front and he was just like on the side and towards the back.
Q: You would not say that Mr. Shaw was 3 feet behind Mr. Ferrie, would you?
A: About.
Q: 3 feet?
A: I am a very poor judger of distance but maybe about that.
Q: That was the first time you saw the Defendant when they came out that building on that day?
A: I saw him that day.
Q: How old was your older son at this time, Mrs. Tadin?
A: He was going to be 17 in November.
THE COURT: I don't think you understand; he wanted to know how old was your son at the present time.
MR. ALCOCK: No, no.
THE WITNESS: At the present time he was 16 going to be 17 in November (sic).
Q: He is how old now?
A: 20, he just made 20.
Q: He made 20 this past November?
A: This past November.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, are you a housewife or are you employed?
A: I am employed part-time.
Q: Where do you work?
A: Home Finance.
Q: Home Finance Company. Do you remember how Mr. Shaw was dressed on that occasion?
A: No, sir, I just remembered his hair and face and I passed a remark he was a distinguished-looking man and my husband told me who he was.
Q: You don't even remember whether he had a coat on or not?
A: I can't say if he had a coat on but just that hair and face impressed me.
Q: You don't remember whether he had a tie or whether the shirt was open?
A: No, sir, I can't say that.
Q: Would you say the main thing you remember was his hair?
A: Yes.
Q: His hair?
A: His hair and his face, just distinguished-looking person and that is what I remembered about him.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, do you remember about 1967 when a preliminary hearing was held on this case?
A: Yes, I recall.
Q: Did you see news about that on the television?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: And read about it in the newspapers?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: Did you follow it pretty closely?
A: Off and on I did.
Q: Did you see pictures of Mr. Shaw at that time in the paper and television?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: At the time you saw those pictures did you recognize him as the person you had seen with Ferrie back in 1964?
A: Yes, sir, I did.
Q: And when did you first come forward to the District Attorney's Office and tell them about this?
A: Today.
Q: Why didn't you do it back in 1964? (sic)
A: 'Cause I didn't want to get involved and I wouldn't be hear today if my husband wouldn't have made me come.
Q: Your husband mad you come?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: He told you you had to come?
A: He told me --
Q: I didn't ask --
THE COURT: I think she has a right to explain.
THE WITNESS: My husband called me at work and I said that I didn't want to get involved and he said he feels like it is my duty to come, and it is my husband and I have to come, and I didn't want to get involved.
Q: This is something you have known since 1967.
A: Yes.
MR. DYMOND: That's all. Thank you.
Q: Mrs. Tadin, are you telling the truth in this case?
A: Of course I am telling the truth.
THE COURT: It is about one minute to 4:00 and I have been advised Gentlemen of the Jury, the State advises me in the presence of Defense Counsel that the witnesses they wish to proceed with at this moment are not in the City of New Orleans, they are from the East and are snowbound. I have been informed by Mr. Alcock, that he asked me to recess at this time to give them an opportunity to be here tomorrow morning and if for some reason they are not able to make it the case will proceed and we will not delay it any further.
In connection with that matter Mr. Alcock and Mr. Dymond both advised me that they will be ready to proceed with their arguments in the case tomorrow.
If these witnesses do show we will hear them and if they don't the State will proceed with the case but we will not in fact delay it any length of time. We will have the closing arguments to the Jury tomorrow, and I have no idea of what length of time they will be allowed because I have not at this moment set any time limit on the arguments but we will discuss that with counsel at a later moment, but we are going to recess this case at this moment until tomorrow morning.
It looks to me, Gentlemen, like the case will be given to you tomorrow afternoon so if there is possibly one more day and you will have the case. You will have the case tomorrow afternoon and that is with agreement by both counsel for both sides.
... At the hour of 4:05 o'clock p.m. the proceedings were recessed until 9:00 o'clock a.m. Friday, February 28, 1969. ...