The Honorable Silvestre Reyes
514 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

29 July 2000

Representative Reyes,

Hola. I am writing to you as a fellow Texan who is concerned about one of our missing. His name is James Arthur Harwood, and he, along with Gerald Francis Kinsman of Massachusetts, has been missing in action in Vietnam since 15 January 1971. Both Harwood, aged twenty, and Kinsman, aged twenty-five, were part of the 5th Special Forces Group, Detachment B-43, based at the Special Forces Camp at Chi Lang, South Vietnam.

On 15 Jan, while escorting the company's 24-man reconnaissance platoon, the Special Forces unit, consisting of Harwood, Kinsman, and James McCarty, came under attack. Communications were lost first with Harwood. McCarty then approached Kinsman's position, where he discovered that Kinsman had been shot in the stomach (exit hole in the back). A request for immediate assistance was sent to the Vietnamese officer, but he claimed that all his units were busy and no response was possible. After fighting ceased, Kinsman and Harwood were still missing. Harwood was classifies MIA, and Kinsman, KIA/BNR.

In 1974, a Vietnamese source reported second hand information which might relate to Harwood and Kinsman. In short, it was said that one American had been killed, and one American, one officer, and one NCO were taken captive. The American was ordered to dig a hole and bury his friend, then was shot and killed, and buried in the same hole. Why, then, hasn't this report been followed up? It very well may be Kinsman and Harwood. We owe it to these men, who were around the same age I now am when they were lost, to locate them, alive or dead, and return them to American soil, where they belong. You are a Vietnam Vet, and since you sit on the Veteran Affairs Committee, surely you can use your influence to renew Congress' interest in doing all they can to return these, and other, heroes home. Thank you for reading this, and please, do not give up on this important cause ... I know I never will.


Stacey N. Jones

letters | 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05 | 06