James  L.  Vanbendegom  
  Rank, Service
Staff Sergeant E-6,  U.S. Army
  Veteran of:
U.S. Army 1966-1967
Cold War 1966-1967
Vietnam War 1967 (POW, Died in Captivity)

James Vanbendegom was born on November 28, 1948, in Kenosha, Wisconsin. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1966, and after completing basic training and advanced infantry training, he deployed to Southeast Asia in early 1967. PFC Vanbendegom served as an infantryman with Company B, 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment of the 4th Infantry Division in South Vietnam until he was captured and taken as a Prisoner of War on July 12, 1967. After spending 20 days in captivity he died of injuries received during his capture on July 31, 1967, although he was officially listed as Missing in Action until being declared dead in 1973, during which time he was promoted through the ranks to Staff Sergeant. James Vanbendegom's remains have never been returned to the United States.

The Soldier's Creed:

I am an American Soldier.

I am a warrior and a member of a team.

I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.

I will always place the mission first.

I will never accept defeat.

I will never quit.

I will never leave a fallen comrade.

I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.

I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.

I am an expert and I am a professional.

I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.

I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life.

I am an American Soldier.




Contact Veteran Tributes at


Contact Veteran Tributes at