SP/4 THOMAS JAMES KINSMAN
Company B, 3d Battalion, 60th Inf
9th Infantry Division
Vinh Long, Republic of Vietnam
6 February 1968
SP/4 Kinsman’s squad was leading the Company as they moved up a narrow canal in a line of M-ii3 Armored Personnel Carriers. The column came under attack by a well-entrenched Viet Cong ambush force using RPG’s and heavy machineguns.
The Americans initiated a counter-attack on the enemy bunker complex but were hampered by the dense overgrowth limiting visibility to 30-feet. A group of 8 soldiers, including Kinsman, got cut off from the main force.
As they were moving through heavy enemy fire trying to reestablish contact with their own unit, an enemy soldier in a concealed position hurled a grenade into their midst.
SP/4 Kinsman immediately alerted his comrades of the danger, then jumped on the grenade and blocked the explosion with his body.
He received severe head and chest wounds, yet he survived.
Communist Hand Grande -0 American Grunt – 1
The last lines of his MOH citation is as follows.
“Through his indomitable courage, complete disregard for his personal safety and profound concern for his fellow soldiers, Sp4c. Kinsman averted loss of life and injury to the other 7 men of his element. Sp4c. Kinsman’s extraordinary heroism at the risk of his life, above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.”
Thomas James Kinsman “Jim” passed away at his home Monday, May 15, 2017