James William O'Brien

January 16, 1942January 18, 2020

Do not Stand at my grave and weep; I am not there. I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain. I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning's hush I am the swift uplifting rush Of birds in circled flight. I am the soft stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry; I am not there. I did not die.

This poem was found and brought in by James Williams O'Brien's Wife; Elke H. O'Brien days after his passing he lead her to his box of memories that held this poem, his poem...

He will be greatly missed.


  • Committal Service

    Thursday, January 30, 2020


James William O'Brien

have a memory or condolence to add?

Cyrus Dodd

February 1, 2020

I remember OB from my time in 1st Platoon K Troop. I was a green E6 with a lot of training knowledge and Experience as a garrison Soldier, who was badly in need of leadership skills and among other things. OB helped me with those skills and with so much more, but even then I could have never equaled him as to who he was. As for being fearless, yes I believe he was, anyone who would go walking around the jungle armed only with that Bowie knife of his had to be.

We got reacquainted a few years back, and spoke often of many things. It was good to hear his voice and his ideas each and every time we talked and I will miss call those calls now. I was lucky to have known him! My family and I wish to offer our deepest Sympathy and thoughts to you Elke for Jim's passing, but he will always be in our thoughts and in our hearts.

David Starkey

January 29, 2020

Jim and I have been friends since 1975.

I was his driver in in Germany for the Scout Platoon of 1st Battalion / 33rd Armor in 3rd Armored Division until November of 1976.
Under his leadership, 1/33 had the top Scout Platoon of 3rd AD for 3 years in a row, as measured by Scout Platoon Qualification Tests (SPQT).
Of course we all know that anything he did, he did to the top of his ability.

One simple rule I learned from my experiences with him during that time.
When it's time to Work, work with a will. At work, he was Sergeant O'Brien
When it's time to Party, party hearty. At play, he was OB
In everything, give it your all.

We caught up again after the service when we both came to live in Phoenix.
He was my staunch, and lifelong friend Jim. My brother from another mother.
We may not always have agreed, but we were always there for one another.

Jim, OB, Sergeant O'Brien You will be missed!

Mollie Anderson

January 26, 2020

Elke and Family;

I am sorry for your loss. I am so glad I had a chance to know Jim. He was a very special person who will be missed.

My dear friend Elke, I know a lifetime together is never enough and I'm thinking of you both with so much love. Your marriage was an inspiration to me and I know your love will always continue, even though you are parted. Your true love story is beautiful to all who know you.

I know words can't take away the hurt you're feeling, but I want you to know how much I care. Sending you love and strength in this time of loss.

With Sincere Sympathy Your Friend,

Mollie Anderson

Dave Goode

January 21, 2020

We just referred to him as O.B. I was his driver for many months. Taking the lead and busting a lot of jungle. It was a dirty and dangerous job but our crew and the platoon he led held him in the highest regard. When O.B. became operations Sargent he brought me with him. He trained me well in the workings of a command post. I always hoped to see him at a reunion and thank him for his leadership and friendship that got us through what we endured.
My sincerest condolences on the passing of a great man and exceptional soldier.

Blandin Karabinos

January 20, 2020

Our sincere condolences to the family and friends of James William O'Brien. This day we, the Troopers of the 11th Armored Cavalry’s Veterans of Vietnam and Cambodia, salute one of our fallen brothers. Jim served courageously with K Troop of the 3rd Squadron in 1970, and it was our privilege to have him in the ranks of the Legendary Blackhorse Regiment. He was himself, a legend, leading the way in the 1st Platoon and inspiring confidence in the troops that followed. Our loss is that of another brother down and we will continue to honor his memory at out gatherings and reunions. His name will be listed on the rolls of our honored dead and in our newsletter, Thunder Run. But as our Burial Liturgy clearly states: “life has not ended, merely changed” and Jim's soul continues on a loving path. As we were together then (in Vietnam), we will be together again in the life hereafter, comfortably enfolded in the loving arms of our Merciful Father.

Chaplain Blandin W. Karabinos, 11th ACVVC (Vietnam 71-72)

Bob Hersey

January 20, 2020

Jim, you are remembered by your K Troop buddies and have now taken your place alongside your fellow Absent Comrades here.

your are now immortal. For those of us who remain, we can only pale in comparison to that. Rest in Pease and to your wife Elke, family and friends my sincere condolences. Allons!

Nathan Crutchfield

January 20, 2020

Jim was our lead scout for 1st Platoon, K Troop, 3/11th Armored Cav Regiment in 1970, Vietnam. He led the platoon as always first in column. I remember him as a solid professional, always keeping us on course, nothing fazed him. He became a legend . I can’t say enough.
Our condolences to Elke as well as our thoughts and prayers.

david ellingson

January 19, 2020

I remember Jim from my time serving in Vietnam. He was a great guy that knew his stuff. He will be missed by all that knew him.
ALLONS Jim until we meet again

Dave Ellingson K TRP 3/11 ACR