Name: Jimmy Lee Coleman
Rank/Branch: E3/US Army
Unit: Company C, 4th Battalion, 47th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division
Date of Birth: 20 November 1949 (Sylacauga AL)
Home City of Record: Goodwater AL
Date of Loss: 06 March 1969
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 101730N 1052251E (XS512379)
Status (in 1973): Missing In Action
Category: 3
Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground
Refno: 1401
Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing)


Source: Compiled from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S.
Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families,
published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK in 2020.

SYNOPSIS: PFC Jimmy L. Coleman was a rifleman in Company C, 4th Battalion,
47th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division. On March 6, 1959, Coleman was serving
as point man for his company on a reconnaissance mission in Kien Hoa
Province, a few miles southeast of the city of My Tho.

Coleman's company prepared to cross a small bamboo bridge by firing on the
opposing bank with M-79 grenade launchers to try to draw fire from enemy
forces, if they were present. The company received no return fire, so
Coleman proceeded across the bridge to provide security on the other side.
As he started across, enemy fire erupted from the other side. When the
firing barrage ceased, Coleman had disappeared.

An examination of the bridge showed blood stains where Coleman had last been
seen standing on the bridge. Divers from Company C searched the area around
the bridge and downstream, but found no trace of PFC Coleman. He was
declared Missing in Action.

In 1974 a Viet Cong rallier reported that Coleman had been shot as he
crossed the bridge, and the rallier had seen him fall into the river.

Whether Jimmy Coleman died as a result of his gunshot wound or drowned when
he fell into the river has never been learned. As far as the U.S. Army is
concerned, he is dead. For family and friends, however, doubts remain.

Since 1975, "millions of documents" and over 250,000 interviews have been
conducted concerning Americans missing in Southeast Asia. Many authorities
are certain that many Americans remain alive today. Whether Jimmy Coleman is
one of them is not certain. But as long as one American is being held
against his will, we must do everything in our power to bring him home.




On March 6, 1969, a U.S. Army reconnaissance patrol attempted to cross a small bamboo bridge in the vicinity of grid coordinates XS 513 379. They first fired grenades onto the far bank of the stream to determine if enemy troops were concealed there, and when no fire was returned, the point man started to cross the bridge so that he could provide security on the far side. However, enemy troops were present and had held their fire until the point man moved onto the bridge. The rest of the U.S. patrol retreated temporarily without seeing what had happened to the point man. When they returned a short time later, they discovered blood stains where he was last seen. Divers searched the stream for the point man's body without success. 

Private First Class Jimmy Lee Coleman, who joined the U.S. Army from Alabama, served with Company C, 4th Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment, 9th Infantry Division. He was the point man on the bridge when the enemy opened fire, and he remains unaccounted for. After the incident, the Army promoted PFC Coleman to Sergeant First Class (SFC). Today, Sergeant First Class Coleman is memorialized on the Courts of the Missing at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific.

Based on all information available, DPAA assessed the individual's case to be in the analytical category of Active Pursuit.

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