KOKOMO, MS, USA U.S. Army SPC, C COMPANY 890TH ENGINEER BATTALION, COLUMBIA, MS 39429 HUSAYBAH, IRAQ 11/06/2003
Specialist Chance was assigned to C Company, 890th Engineer Battalion, Army National Guard, Columbia, Mississippi. He died near the Syrian border of injuries sustained when his vehicle struck a landmine.
Chance didn’t want his fellow soldiers with spouses or children to risk themselves driving through dangerous territory in Iraq, so he volunteered to lead his convoy. James, “Jimmy Cricket’, joined the Army in 1997 after high school, serving one tour of duty before getting out and then joining the Mississippi National Guard in 2002. He wanted to take advantage of its higher-education opportunities and make something of himself.
James was always thinking of others. He usually stayed close to his parents’ home, helping to care for his father, who is in a wheelchair with congestive heart failure. He enjoyed fixing up old, banged-up cars and trucks and had a knack for storytelling – spinning tales of mischievous acts.