James Frederick Worth

United States Marine Corps
11 December 1951 - 17 January 1977
Hillside, Maryland
Panel 02W Line 127


James F Worth

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for James Frederick Worth

14 Oct 2003

I never knew Jimmy, I only wore his bracelet for many years and still do. I wanted to find out who he was, what he was like and so forth. I located two of his sisters, who are the kindest people I have ever met. They told me how Jimmy never graduated, but left school to join the Marine Corps to serve his country. How he loved his family, how he always had a smile, and how he was always willing to help at any cost. They both described him as very tall, very handsome, strawberry blonde hair, the nicest blue eyes and he fit the typical description of a "Marine". Upon further research I found someone who served with Jimmy with 1st Anglico and he told me how he often wondered what happened to "Worthless", a nickname that was given to Jimmy. He also described Jimmy to me as one of the nicest people he had ever known. Jimmy extended his tour so he could go home to be with his family at Christmas time. He never made it back to Maryland.

Jimmy and another member of 1st Anglico volunteered for a mission. Jimmy was left on his own and was last heard from on April 2, 1972 over his radio. His body was never brought home where he belonged. I often wonder to myself exactly what happened to Jimmy and to all of our other POW's/MIA's. It is important to remember and give respect to all of our Veterans who serve in our Military. I felt like I needed to place this here to show that Jimmy is never forgotten. He is and will always be forever in my heart. I know one day I will meet him in God's heaven and will be able to return a smile to him and say "Thank you" to him for all that he gave.

From a family friend,
Kimberly Latham
Capitol Heights, Maryland

22 Jan 2004

I am Jimmy's younger sister. There are 12 of us. Only 8 living now. Jimmy was number 8 and I am number 9. Jimmy became MIA on April 1, 1972. We had just came home from my sister Ardella's after celebrating Easter and when we pulled up there they were. In their Marine uniforms. Their military car sitting there. My Mom got out of the car and fell to her knees. It was horrible. It is still horrible because we don't know what really happened. If anyone can enlighten me please email me at annettemims@charter.net . We all miss him very much and at the same time thank him. He said he would rather go over there and fight them than to fight them right here in our back yard. I am very proud of all our service men and extremely grateful. If not for them, I wouldn't have the life I lead today.

Annette Worth-Mims
1134 White Road, Piedmont, SC, 29673

11 Feb 2004

I didn't know Corporal Worth. I've worn his name on my wrist and carried him in my heart for many, many years. Today, I saw his face for the first time and I cried. I felt as though I had finally met a friend.

Debbie Madden

22 Mar 2004

I am a high school student at Fort Bragg, NC, and I have had Cpl James F. Worth's I.D. bracelet for quite some time now. My mother is also in the service and she told me that when Cpl Worth is found that I should return the bracelet to his family out of respect for him. I've been on the internet checking periodically to see if Cpl Worth has been found and I will continue to do so. I just hope that one day I will be able to send his family my bracelet.

From one who wears his MIA bracelet,
Chris Willard

26 Mar 2004

I am the sister of SSgt James F. Worth who has been missing in action in Viet Nam since April 1, 1972. Thanks to a wonderful little girl, Kim Huff, who has put my brother's name on the lips and in the minds of many people. I owe her a great debt of gratitude and she will remain in my heart and prayers always. I also want to thank the many people that are wearing his bracelet and helping us in keeping his memory alive. Jimmy was a wonderful young man and missed by all us very much. Semper fi!

From his sister,
Aleta Shoemaker
161 Green Road, St Augustine, Fl 32080

25 May 2004

Hello Annette and Aleta,

I found this memorial today. I was a US Army Target Acquisition Specialist at Gio Linh ... before your brother's team.

Army ... but a piece of my heart though belongs to those of the USMC that served in this area (Northern Quang Tri Province). There was an ANGLICO Team there when I was there. One of the team did a practice Fire-Mission to show me the way it was done with guns on the New Jersey ... Your Brother had a tough job, in a tough place. My heart goes out to you, all of his family.

From a Viet-Vet, Gio Linh (A-2), 02 Apr 69 - 20 Oct 70,
Carl L Moore
P O Box 62, Wolcott, In 47995 0062

11 Oct 2004

I am Jimmy's niece. I live in Iowa. His brother, Reggie, now passed on, was my step-father.

I have very few memories of Jimmy but he's always in my heart.

He was pronounced missing on my birthday.

I wear his name proudly. I, Like the rest of my family, want to know what has happened.

We hope and we pray that we will finally have Jimmy home and we can put our hearts at rest with him.

I served proudly in the Army, inspired by Reggie and Jimmy.

Our family is thankful for the thoughts and the prayers of so many.
We are not alone and they are not forgotten.

From his niece,
Terri Winters

13 Dec 2004

Although I never got to meet Uncle Jimmy, I could not be more proud of him. I am sitting here two days after his birthday wishing that there was some way that I could let him know that he is loved and greatly missed. The only way that I have known about Uncle Jimmy is from some stories that my father (Vaughn) has told me and how my father has always kept his bracelet close to him. I remember his Funeral and how much it upset me that I never got to meet him! Maybe one day ... but until then, I will make sure that my son knows how proud the Worth family is of Uncle Jimmy!

From a nephew,
San Diego, Ca.

09 Feb 2006

I don't know James but I'm a brother in arms. I'm a US Marine fighting for the same freedom James did. James paid the ultimate sacrifice for his beloved country and we will always remember him for it. For James's family - you should be honored to have such a good son and brother, for he served in the most elite fighting force in the entire world ... SEMPER FI

Pfc. Patrick Rehder

29 May 2006

I went to DC to meet a friend and saw a Vietnam veteran who was selling memorabilia from the war. He asked what state I lived in and when I told him Maryland he gave me James F. Worth's MIA bracelet. I bought it and think of him often. Today is Memorial Day and I have seen the picture of James for the first time. Thank you for putting it on-line.

I am only 28 and was not even born when the war was being fought but I am still grateful to those who fought and especially to those who made the ultimate sacrifice for MY freedom. What he did many years ago can still be commended today. I know that my words don't make your loss any easier. I cannot imagine the pain of losing a child or brother. I just wanted to tell you that your brother is not forgotten. I have 4 children and will make sure they know of him and others who fought for the America that we are so proud of. I pray that God has given you peace and that it will be discovered what happened to your brother and that it never is forgotten.

God Bless you and your family.

Heather Ours

14 Jun 2006

After spending an hour on the phone with an old friend and fellow veteran, I typed "Gio Linh" on Google and came across this memorial. During my phone conversation, I recalled how, during the Tet Offensive, the staff sergeant in charge of our naval gunfire team at Gio Linh had promised to nominate us for a unit commendation medal, and me and a Lance Corporal named Stanley Wheeler who had ducked out under artillery fire for Bronze Stars. Joseph suggested I research the unit history and write to the Defense Department, but heck, I said ... "If an officer didn't see you do it, it didn't happen."

We never met, but Corporal Worth was my brother. I served in 1st ANGLICO at Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, before Vietnam. At Gio Linh, the Naval Gunfire team from 12th Marines in 1968 comprised half of maybe only a dozen "round-eyes" on what was then a South Vietnamese Army base, so I imagine he and his teammates were as close as we were. The men [and women] serving [and dying] today overseas may carry some newer pieces of gear, but we wear the same Eagle, Globe and Anchor. They are our brothers, and they are in our hearts, and in our prayers...

Carlos Gaivar
USMC 1966-1971
12th Marines
Republic of Vietnam
Nov 1967 - Dec 1968
Los Angeles, Calif

14 Oct 2006

My name is Kevin Hahn, originally from Frederick, Maryland. My uncle Milton (Jimmy) E. Kemp III was a Marine stationed in Vietnam from 1970-71. He made it out of Vietnam alive, however died shortly afterwards in June 71. I was 12 at the time he died. In late 72 I bought a bracelet from the United League of Families to recognize one of the MIA's. I was looking for similarities between my uncle, and the person whose name I selected.

I wanted the person to be from Maryland, a Marine, and of the same rank that my uncle was, as I felt he would have gone through the same ordeals while he was in Vietnam that my uncle did. For obvious reasons, I chose James F. Worth, and always wondered if he was called by Jimmy also. I have been wearing that bracelet every day since November of 1972. This week, I had to order another bracelet as the original one finally cracked. The new bracelet came with a letter detailing his last known contact.

That prompted me to finally get on the internet to see if I could find a picture to put with the name I had been carrying with me for the past 34 years.

I was happy to find out that he was called Jimmy as well. I have never spoken with or had the pleasure to meet his family, but I wanted them to know that I understand the feeling even as a child, to live with the fear of a military vehicle driving up in front of your house.

Even though it has been 34 years, both your Jimmy and mine are still deeply missed, and will never be forgotten.

Kevin L. Hahn
489 Apple Cross Road, Harpers Ferry WV 25425

10 Nov 2006

In early 1988, while serving in the Marine Corps in Okinawa, Japan, I purchased Corporal Jimmy Worth's MIA bracelet. I have faithfully worn that bracelet for the past 18 years, including during my service in Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm. During the many years of wearing the bracelet, I have always wondered About Jimmy's life. Today is the 231st birthday of the Marine Corps and I found myself thinking of my fellow Marine Jimmy and wondering what became of him. I googled his name and found this site.

To his family: Please know that while I never met Jimmy, I honor him by wearing his bracelet. My heart goes out to you all for your sacrifice. I hope that someday, his remains shall be returned and be given the respect and honor he deserves.

Russell M. Reinertson

14 Nov 2006

I have been wearing James's bracelet for over 15 years now. On Sunday evening Nov. 12 2006 I was watching "War Stories" with Oliver North on the Fox News Channel and they were actually talking about when James went missing. It really shocked me that they were (it brought tears to my eyes to hear it). I was very glad and excited that Oliver North and James' platoon and friends from that time still remember him and still want him home.

Let's bring them ALL Home!!

Roger Wayne "Shadoe" Dent Sr.

03 Feb 2007

Jim was a friend of mine. I was in Quang Tri when the NVA came across the DMZ. I remember we were under constant incoming and were in constant contact with Jim and Lt Bruggeman. A Huey was finally able to get up to Alpha II to pull out Jim and the Lt. I remember the Lt got hit during the evacuation, but Jim was not in the vicinity. We did talk to him on the radio, and he was going to try and escape.

On a personal note, I remember Jim as fun loving guy. We drank more than our share of beers together. I also remember Jim having a gift for languages. He was a great friend and comrade. I visited the memorial is Washington and saw Jim and Lt Bruggeman's names on the wall.

Pat Leary

03 Mar 2007

Jimmy was my uncle and I really only remember seeing him once when he was home on leave at my grandmother's house back in '71. I was too young to know what war was, or what he was doing in it at the time. I do remember vividly sitting in the kitchen at my grandmother's house as the "CACO" gave her the news that my uncle was MIA.

I wore his bracelet for several years and even though I never really knew him, my uncle served as in inspiration to me. His sacrifice gave me the intestinal fortitude to accomplish many things in my life on this earth.

After 24 years of total service, I prepare to close my military career in a different way than Jimmy did. This is the only place I could find to say "thank you." I wish I knew what really happened to you, and I hope you made it to Fiddler's Green.

From his nephew,
Frank Ball (aka Frank Sullivan)

21 Apr 2007

My name is Rebecca and I first want to give sincere and heart-felt regards to the family and friends of SSgt James Worth - and to SSgt Worth, himself.

My oldest brother served in the US Navy and also in Vietnam. Though he's no longer here, I am thankful every day that he came home.

My only son, PFC Metzer, Matthew, is presently training at Camp Pendleton in California and will graduate on April 27th - his 21st birthday.

Today while on liberty, he called just to say that he had finally gotten the opportunity to purchase a POW/MIA bracelet - something he'd been wanting to do for a long time. He wanted to read the brief history of the man and fellow Marine whose name he chose: SSgt James F. Worth. When he had finished, he said that he would never let the memory of this man - this Marine - be forgotten. SSgt Worth will continue being remembered with love, honor and respect - pride, courage and commitment.

I am honored and thankful to know that James will be with my son and a source of strength and comfort for him. A constant friend, and Lord knows he'll be needing all three.

I am glad, too, that this bracelet remains one of the few personal items permitted to be worn while in uniform.

A Blue Star Mom
E-mail address is not available.

10 Nov 2007

My name is Steve Babb, former Marine Sergeant in Sub Unit One, 1st ANGLICO (June 1970 - February 1972). My MOS was 0849, which was a Forward Observer for Naval Gunfire. Many of us in this classification also called in artillery, air strikes and gunships.

Most of my tour of duty was in III Corps. Fire Support Base Mace, with the US Army, 199th Light Infantry Brigade and the 1st Air Cavalry and at Nui Dat with the Australian Army and a brief stint with the Special Forces training Cambodians near Baria and the US Army 11th Armored Cavalry. Later assigned to the 1st ARVN Division in IV Corps.

Sub Unit One was a relatively small unit with observers and radio operators scattered all along the coastline of Viet Nam. We were a close unit, particularly since we were assigned everywhere and were the few Marines still in country. Periodically all teams and/or team members would meet each other at our Saigon Headquarters or depending upon operational needs we may be assigned to another Corps or team for the duration of an operation.

During my assignment with Special Forces, Jimmy was assigned to my NGF Team. We were assigned to Special Forces to provide Naval Gunfire support from US Naval destroyers on line for fire missions while the Cambodians and Special Forces conducted ground operations. I recall days of humping through jungles with double and triple canopies, extreme heat, humidity, torrential rains, calling in fire missions and Harassment and Interdiction (H&I) fire missions. I also remember the few nights when we could build a fire and sit around talking about home and joking about what we would do if we ever returned to the real world.

With the passing of years I don't recall if Jimmy was a Forward Observer or Radio Man. What I do recall is he was an excellent Marine, fun loving and someone you wanted next to you when things got tough or you needed a friend to talk with.

I was unaware of what happened to Jimmy after I returned stateside in February 1972. Today (Nov. 10th, Marine Corps Birthday) being led to your site was the first that I had heard what happened. Even 35 years of not knowing cannot reduce the sense of loss of a good man and fellow Marine. I find rest and peace knowing Jimmy is an Honor Guard to our Lord from everlasting to everlasting.

Semper Fi,
Steve Babb

04 Mar 2008

Today I received my MIA/POW bracelet. I could not pick out who I wanted but was allowed to pick the branch of military. I picked the Marines because my dad was a Marine. I would love to hear from anyone who also shares the bracelet name with me, maybe you could catch me up on the details. I always wanted to wear a MIA/POW bracelet as a girl growing up, but I never really knew where to get one. One day at work (I'm a bartender in Missouri) I saw someone wearing the bracelet and became interested all over again. I would love to hear from anyone and I promise to write back.

Leann Smreker
6304 Rainbow Ridge, Washington, Mo. 63090

A Note from The Virtual Wall

The 1st ANGLICO people were experts in coordinating air, artillery, and naval gunfire support for ground forces, working as airborne or ground Forward Observers. Corporal James F. Worth was a member of an ANGLICO gunfire liaison team at Firebase Alpha 2 in Gio Linh District, Quang Tri Province, one of several in the "Alpha" group of tiny firebases arranged in a loose arc just south of the DMZ.

The North Vietnamese Spring 1972 invasion began with a two-pronged attack - the reinforced 304th Division moving eastward from Laos and the 308th Division attacking southward across the Demilitarized Zone. When the NVA 308th Division crossed the DMZ, attacking southward on coastal plains between the sea and Highway 1, they encountered the Alpha firebases and concentrated most of their force against the three firebases between Highway 1 and the coast. Firebase Alpha 2 was the most important of the three because it was the farthest north and one of two bases in the area containing artillery. On the morning of April 1, the base was overrun.

The ANGLICO team was overrun along with the rest of the firebase. Its commanding officer, 1st Lt David C. Bruggeman, USMC, was fatally wounded in the fighting (and was awarded a posthumous Silver Star for his bravery). A second team member, Corporal Worth, was separated from his comrades during the confusion of battle and could not be found when a Huey from F Troop, 8th Cavalry managed to pick up the other team members. On April 2nd, Corporal Worth came up on his radio to advise that he was on his way overland to Dong Ha. He never arrived. Corporal Worth was carried as Missing in Action until the Secretary of the Navy approved a Presumptive Finding of Death on 17 Jan 1977.

Post-war investigations by the Joint Task Force-Full Accounting found witnesses who found the body of a dead Caucasian within the Alpha-2 base area; they said he was dressed in combat gear, was in a Jeep, and had a radio on his back. The body was buried, but the exact spot is uncertain. JTF-FA documents now available from the Library of Congress, the most recent a 2007 message, indicate the search for Cpl Worth's remains continue.

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 15 Oct 2003
Last updated 08/10/2009