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Info Sheet - James Eldon Moore
Killed in Action 25 March 1968 - (upgraded 15Jun2018)

Comments from fellow Centaurs - Letter to his parents
wallName: 1LT James Eldon Moore
Status: Killed In Action from an incident on 03/25/1968 while performing the duty of Pilot.
Age at death: 25
Date of Birth: 03/19/1943
Home City: Weeping Water, NE
Service: AR branch of the reserve component of the US Army
Unit: D-3/4 CAV 25 INF
Major organization: 25th Infantry Division
Flight class: 67-10
Service: AR branch of the US Army
The Wall location: 46E-021
Short Summary: Killed on ground during mortar attack while running back to find crew members who were wounded by same round.
Country: South Vietnam
MOS: 1981 = 19 Rotary Wing Aviator (Unit Commander)
Primary cause: Ground Casualty
Length of service: 1
Location: Hau Nghia Province III Corps


Eugene J Carolan, D-3/4 Cav 25th Inf, Oct 68 to Dec 69:

1LT James Eldon Moore was the Aerorifle Platoon Leader of D Troop, 3/4 Cavalry, 25th Infantry Division. He was both an accomplished aviator as well as a proficient tactician. The mission of the Aerorifle platoon was to exploit cavalry reconnaissance as well as to serve as the ready reaction force for aviation or assault/recon-type missions. The ‘Blue Team’ was the ready action force for the F Company Ranger LRRP insertion and extractions. 1LT Moore was an aggressive and professional officer who was keenly aware of his responsibilities as the Aerorifle Platoon Leader. 1LT Moore was one of the first officers of D-3/4 CAV to go on the ‘Wall’ from his bravery and mission exploits. During my tour of duty he was often remembered for his leadership, intelligence and bravery.

Charlie Johnson to Rick Moore - May 27, 2001

Subject: Memorial Day Greetings

Hello Rick
I flew with you brother Jim in D Troop, 3/4 Cav and got your email address from Larry Patterson. I understand from Larry that you may be interested in contact with some of us who flew with Jim. I am not very good at this sort of thing. However I am helping a friend of mine who is trying to make contact with the pilots that might have known his brother, who was a Cobra gunship pilot in Vietnam and was killed there in 1970, and came to understand that it is helpful to the family (at least to my friend and his family) if some personal connection is made with people who knew his brother.

Knowing this it seems to be of help to him and his family it seemed that I should make an effort to contact you on this Memorial Day weekend.

I flew UH-1C helicopter gunships as Jim did and flew with him on many missions including one where he performed the mission in such an outstanding and heroic manner that I nominated him for the Distinguished Service Cross, one of our country’s highest awards for valor. I do not recall if the medal was actually awarded. I hope it was. (note: we believe that it was downgraded to a Silver Star)

I can tell you that my memories of Jim are mainly that of a Happy Viking Warrior with a large handlebar mustache and a grin. He was truly a pleasure to be with whether we were just sitting around talking back in base camp or flying on gun support missions.

He was also an excellent helicopter pilot. I will pass along one example of that.

I recall one of the middle of the night missions in the rainy season where Jim was the Aircraft Commander in the second gunship and I was the Aircraft Commander and mission commander in another gunship.

We had flown to some place southwest of Cu Chi (where we were based, at the 25th Infantry Division Headquarters) to support a Special Forces camp that was being attacked by a large number of enemy troops. It was raining very heavy, the clouds were down to about a thousand feet off the ground and we were one of several helicopter gun teams along with an Air Force fixed wing gunship trying to provide assistance to the Special Forces troops. Jim’s Aircraft was flying as the wing (trailing aircraft) and during the chaos of the action there while we were trying to shoot at the enemy and avoid being shot down by them, while at the same time avoiding all of the other aircraft in this congested area above the Special Forces camp, we got separated. While talking to each other on the radio and looking for each other I noticed a slight red glow in front of us that quickly became the reflection of the red instrument lights in the cockpit of Jim’s helicopter. Jim and I were looking at each other and were within a few feet of a mid-air when we both “broke right” and barely escaped a head on mid-air collision. It took fast reflexes and decisive action for both of us to “break right” and my recollection is that Jim started the evasive action slightly before I did. I bought him several “cold ones” for saving our butts that night with his lightning quick reaction.

That’s enough war stories. I just wanted to let you know that Jim was a special person and a special pilot. I know his family is proud of him. I always think of him, and the other guys who didn’t make it back, on Memorial Day Holidays and often on other occasions as well. When I went to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington several years ago his name was the first one I looked up.


Rick Moore, Jim's brother (Thursday, July 12, 2012 1:42 PM). To: Centaurswebsite
Hello, my name is Rick Moore of Papillion, Nebraska.  My brother Jim Moore was a gunship pilot in D troop ¾ Cav.  Jim lost his life March, 25th 1968, 6 days after his 25th birthday by rocket attack. 
I have visited with a couple of you several years ago, but was wondering if any of you have special memories/stories about Jim? Thanks, Rick Moore

Charlie Johnson to Rick Moore (Friday, July 13, 2012 2:01 PM)
Cc: Fleming, Powell, Eastes, Patterson, Dow, Arthur, Siegel, Kelly

Hello Rick.
I recall a couple of emails back and forth with you several years ago, then we lost contact. Thanks for checking in again. Several of the guys have wanted to communicate with Jim’s family but, regretfully, we had not maintained the connection with you.
We have upgraded the website during the past couple of years, including creation of the I Remember section. My recollection of a night gunship support mission that Jim and I flew during the monsoon season is posted in the I Remember section. That story tickled the memory chips in Pat Eastes’ helmet holder. His recollection of that same incident is also posted in the I Remember section.
I am sending a copy of this email to some of the guys who still have a strong connection with Jim’s time with the Centaurs. I’m sure there are others who would like to say Hello but I can’t recall them offhand. Please feel free to send to any of them, or to all of them, or to me, any further email inquiries. We will all be pleased to correspond with you.
I hope you get some pleasure from viewing information about Jim on our website. I always do. Jim was one of those ‘special people.’ It seemed to me back then that Jim, the picture of what a Viking warrior looked like, had received an extra helping of happiness. We were fortunate that he was willing to share some of that happiness with us. Charlie Johnson

Rick Moore to Charlie Johnson:
Thanks you so much for getting back to me.
Your email of 2001 made my son want to know more about his uncle.
We have never seen the picture of Tom Meeks and Jim.
He will be forever young!
Brought chills to me.
Again Thanks! Looking forward to hearing from you and others again! Rick

Charlie Johnson to Rick Moore:
You might want to send an email note to Bruce Powell. Bruce was Jim’s Platoon Leader. Bruce may have some additional photographs of Jim or recollections that you might find of interest. Bruce’s email address is:
Larry Patterson was a close friend of Jim’s and, I believe, the Escort Officer who accompanied Jim’s body home from Vietnam. Larry may also have some additional information or photographs of Jim that might be helpful in filling in Jim’s Vietnam history for you and your family.
I have attached below the internet address for Jim’s page on the Together We Served website. You may find the information on that page of some interest. I noticed that the headstone has some factual errors in the identification of the unit to which Jim was assigned at the time of his death. There may be other errors on that Together We Served website. I’ll review it and comment further at your request.  Charlie Johnson webmaster

Bruce Powell to the Centaur Society,
Charlie Johnson, through monitoring the website, has made contact with Rick Moore, brother of our fellow Centaur Jim Moore (KIA 68). Many of us from 67-68 were very close to this great gun pilot. In preparing info for our In Memoriam section of the website for 1LT Moore, I had gathered a lot of information and was able to send it to him. I copied all of you on this message because it speaks to the valuable thing we do as the Centaur Society. My hope is that it may prove useful to you in recruiting more Centaurs of your tour into the fold. Besides gathering information for our legacy we might also provide some closure for the many, still weeping friends and relatives of our fallen Brothers. We have been greatly blessed, Bruce Powell

Larry D. Patterson to Centaur Society (12/9/11)

I wrote letters and Christmas cards very often to "Big" Jim's mother after I got home. Once, when i was in Omaha, I went to their home and visited the grave site and got to meet the whole family.  But, thru the years i have lost contact with them.  does anyone have any of the family connections to allow them to view the site?

Bruce Powell to Rick Moore (Friday, July 13, 2012 10:55 PM)
Thank you for contacting Charlie Johnson at the Centaur Website concerning your brother Jim Moore.
I was your brothers Centaur Section Commander in Vietnam. We flew together a lot. During his training to become an Aircraft Commander and Team Leader, we became very good friends.  He wanted to know everything and damn near interrogated me after every mission. "Why did I do this or that… How did I know know… What would you have done if?"  He loved discussing the tactics and procedures. He was  a quick learner and natural leader. 
He ran the section (Heavy Scouts) while I was on leave in the States in January of 1968 and wrote me of his great adventures. I have attached a scanned copy of it. He was so excited to be successfully using his new talents, and doing it during one of the darkest times of the Vietnam war; Tet! (He dated it 67 not 68. A typical mistake for most of us at the turn of a new year.) He mentions his good friend "Charlie" who is the webmaster that you wrote to. Let me know if you want an explanation of any of the terms he used.
In March of 1968, Jim was again filling in for me while I was in Bien Hoa transitioning into the Cobra aircraft. I returned to find he had been killed. TJ Lange, one of our favorite heroic Crew Chiefs, caught me on the flight line and gave me the details. It was crushing. TJ was in the bunker that night with Jim, near the Operations Shack after the rockets began coming in. Jim ran back out, for reasons that were never clear, and was hit instantly. Knowing him as I did, I surmised that he felt a responsibility to perform some necessary action as Section leader. He held that position in high esteem and did a magnificent job.
TJ showed me the Flight Scheduling Board in Operations (5th MyPage photo) where all the pilots and their assignments were posted. The line with Jim's name had a shrapnel hole in it. This made a lot of the guys say that that round had his name on it. The pup that was a unit mascot was also killed with the same round. Later on Mike Galloway, one of our gun pilots, took a picture of the Status board with the hole (attached). Glad he did because when the story is told it sounds a lot like an embellishment to a war story. The hole is to the right of the KIA notation.
Decades later, at the Tucson Arizona reunion of the 3/4 Cav, TJ and I were reunited. We talked about Jim and others. Didn't know my emotions still ran that strong. That amazing bond created in combat called "camaraderie" lives in most of us still today. Many don't even realize it. TJ was so inspired in rediscovering this special feeling that he began to work with us full time on our quest to involve more Centaurs in the reunions, and to get our experiences recorded for the unit legacy. He devoted much personal time and money to assist with everything including the creation and distribution of our "Centaur Brothers" DVD (The DVD was sent to all Centaurs to inspire them to get involved). 
A few months later TJ was killed in a motorcycle accident in Texas (somebody wasn't watching and ran over him). I was devastated. For some reason my mind linked Jim's death of 40 some years ago, with that of TJ Lange. The old grieving began again and joined the new grieving for TJ. I just couldn't get it out of my mind. I almost decided to join those who have erased their mind of Vietnam, but didn't. I am doing well now and even more driven to record the stories of our fellow Centaurs.
Charlie Johnson started the In Memoriam section on the website so that we could share memories of our fallen with the rest of the world. It was an effort to help some of us still living to pay better tribute to those that didn't make it. It is a tough task to gather the data. So many vets have spent all these years putting Vietnam behind them. 
Since then Charlie and I have been working on converting the "" website to one with more impact through the use of multimedia. It is a work in progress; very slow progress because this is a technically tough job for us old guys. You can view it at   . Go to the "In Memoriam" section, click on "KIA", then click on Jim's name. These are some photos that I've touched up in PhotoShop and added some text information to (use arrow buttons in the lower right).
Go back to the main menu and click on "PhotoAudioFlim" button, then the "Video" button, then on the movie "bap11". It may take a while to load, and in some cases it may keep starting over until the whole movie is loaded. Be patient! It has taken me years to learn how to recover these old 8mm films and to edit in sounds to make them even more interesting. 
If you have any input that you would like added to Jim's section of the new site, please get them to myself or Charlie.
Know that you and any of Jim's family and friends would be most welcome guests at any of our reunions. We would love to meet you.
I have copied this email to the Centaur Society Members (a group dedicated to recording the Centaur Legacy). You may hear from some of them.
Jim lives in our hearts, Bruce Powell


Rick Moore to Bruce Powell: (Fri, Jul 13, 2012 at 9:31 PM),

Right now I am overwhelmed with all you shared with me.
I so appreciate the feedback.
To see Jim’s writing again is wonderful.
My son has a genuine interest in getting to know him.
Jim is somewhat of a legend in Weeping Water.
Every year the outstanding athlete and citizen award is given to a boy and girl for their 4 years of high school accomplishments in his name.
This was established by the towns-people after his death.
I am his only surviving  relative.
Our other brother died of asbestos cancer beginning during his Navy service.
My parents were proud that we were all in the service but they never were really the same after Jim’s death.


Letter from D Troop to Jim's Parents

Troop D (Air)
3D Squadron 4th Cavalry
APO US Forces 96225

14 Apr 1968

Mr & Mrs Eldon R Moore

Dear Mr & Mrs Moore:
Please accept my condolences for the death of your son, 1LT James E Moore, an outstanding officer.

On the morning of March 25th, 1968 at approximately 0400 AM, Cu Chi Base Camp came under enemy mortar and rocket attack. This particular night, Jim was in charge of two Aircraft and crews which were on Division Strip alert. Our Troop has at least two gunships performing this mission every other night. When our base camp came under enemy mortar and rocket fire, Jim awoke and also got both of his crews up and moving to a bunker nearby. Jim made sure that all his men were under cover and was proceeding from our alert crew building to the same bunker, when a rocket exploded just a few feet from where he was standing. He was taken immediately to the hospital along with two other crew members who were wounded by the same rocket blast. He was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital.

We are all saddened by Jim’s death. He was one of the finest men I have ever had the privilege to know and work with. He always maintained a cheerful disposition while performing difficult and important duties for his country. He was not only a soldier, but a friend to all who knew him and we are all very proud to have served with him.

The Officers and men in this Troop share your grief and sorrow. Memorial services for Jim were held at 0800 AM March 26th, 1968 in the 3D Squadron, 4th Cavalry Chapel here at Cu Chi.

Before closing there is a bit of personal knowledge I would like to extend. Jim was more than a soldier and friend to me, in that while he was in Flight School at Fort Rucker I had the opportunity to be his flight instructor during the advanced instrument phase of his training. As such as I feel he was part of my personal responsibility as an individual. Being very much interested in how the people I helped train developed, there is only one word to describe Jim’s ability as an aviator and soldier - outstanding. He was one of the finest individuals I have known and many of the men in the troop feel his absence.

I hope the information that has been furnished will be adequate. If I can be of any further assistance please write to me.

Thomas J Bourgeois
Major TC
Executive Officer