LCDR James Joseph Connell

LCDR James Joseph Connell

Wilmington, New Castle County, Delaware, USA
Death 14 Jan 1971 (aged 31)
Burial San Diego, San Diego County, California, USA
Plot Section AC Site 138
Memorial ID 3393386 · View Source
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James resided in Wilmington, Delaware prior to entering the war.

James was a 1961 graduate of the United States Naval Academy. After graduation he attended the flight training program, qualifying in the A-4 Skyhawk light attack aircraft. He served on the U.S.S. Ranger (CVA-61)

While flying a A-4E, BuNo. 151024, near the Red River south of Hanoi, his plane was shot down.

He died during Captivity as a POW of the North Vietnam Army. His remains were repatriated on March 6, 1974.

James was awarded the "Navy Cross", Air Medal, Prisoner Of War Medal, and the Purple Heart.

James is honored on Panel 9E, Row 22 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington, D.C.

Service # O-64738

Husband of Jenny.

( Bio by: Russ Pickett )

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Navy Cross Citation submitted by: BarryC:

The President of the United States of America takes pride in presenting the Navy Cross (Posthumously) to Lieutenant Commander [then Lieutenant] James Joseph Connell (NSN: 0-64738), United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism as a Prisoner of War in North Vietnam from April 1968 to June 1969.

Under constant pressure from the North Vietnamese in their attempt to gain military information and propaganda material, Lieutenant Commander Connell experienced severe torture with ropes and was kept in almost continuous solitary confinement. As they persisted in their hostile treatment of him, he continued to resist by feigning facial muscle spasms, incoherency of speech, and crippled arms with loss of feeling in his fingers.T

The Vietnamese, convinced of his plight, applied shock treatments in an attempt to improve his condition. However, he chose not to indicate improvement for fear of further cruelty. Isolated in a corner of the camp near a work area visited daily by other prisoners, he established and maintained covert communications with changing groups of POW's, thereby serving as a main point of exchange of intelligence information. By his exceptional courage, determination, and resourcefulness in this most difficult line of resistance, he reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service and the United States Armed Forces.




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  • Maintained by: Russ Pickett
  • Originally Created by: US Veterans Affairs Office
  • Added: 3 Mar 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial 3393386
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for LCDR James Joseph Connell (6 May 1939–14 Jan 1971), Find a Grave Memorial no. 3393386, citing Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery, San Diego, San Diego County, California, USA ; Maintained by Russ Pickett (contributor 46575736) .