James Wall, U.S.Navy Door Gunner

Larry Bradshaw

by fellow shipmate and gunner, Bill Rutledge

In the Seawolves, we had many heros, of one I will write
His name was Jim Wall, from Texas, he was full of fight
Hit in the chest, the round went through
this happened at Nha Ba, while on Det Two

He could have gone home, but fought to stay
Two long months healing, then back in the fray
He I knew, for many times we had met
He just couldn't wait to get back on a Det

He loved his job and just couldn't wait
Gunners short, he went to Det Eight
Eight was in for maintenance that day
Now was his chance to get back in the fray

Maintenance was pulled, the weapons were right
Now was his chance to get back in the fight
He was fearless and ready, he knew what had to be done
As we flew a patrol before the setting of the sun

On the ground something was seen, that was not right
So we refueled and put in a strike.
Jim was back doing what he liked best
And every flight was an inner test.

We staged out of Rach Gia that very night
Jim hoped we would scramble by the full moons light
Scramble, scramble was the call
On the left door was a Seawolf Gunner, named Jim Wall

Friendlies in trouble as we rolled in
Taking fire Jim called, over the rockets in
Three passes, low on ammo, we had to rearm
We're OK, and with Gods help, we've came to no harm

Refueled, rearmed, we go back again
Jim gives a thumbs up, with a big wide grin
Once more, taking heavy fire, was the shout
Our rockets firing, and lead pouring out

An explosion was heard on the left side
This was the moment, a Seawolf hero had died
We've lost the engine, we're going down
We're taking hits, what a horrible sound

One skid on a dike we're going to roll
We still have power and come out of that hell hole
Our other bird covers with fire, as we come out as a team
I check Jim, he's gone, I fill with horror, and want to scream.

Help was called to be at the short strip
The Lord had been with Jim on his fatal last trip.
I write these words in memory of him,
and to pay homage to a Seawolf gunner named Jim

Many questions unanswered as in every death
But Jim answered the call when put to the test
Jim Wall is gone to the heavenly fleet, but his memory remains
And I hope writing this will ease some of the lingering pain

Rest in peace Petty Officer James Wall

Recent War Stories

by Marty Twite Capt. USN (RET) C.O. 4/70-4/71
by Roger Ek, Seawolf 25
by Reprinted with permission , "Naval Aviation News" August 1968
by Roger Ek, Seawolf 25
by Roger Ek, Seawolf 25
by Bill Rutledge
by AECS W. R. Rutledge
by Thurman L. Hicks
by AO1 Fred T. Stark