Wilbourn III, James N.

James Newton Wilborn III was born on 28 June 1962 in Huntsville, Alabama. He attended Auburn University and received his commission in the USMC through the ROTC program. During Desert Storm, Captain Wilborn was assigned to the Marine Attack Squadron 542, Marine Aircraft Group 13 Forward, 3d Marine Aircraft WIng, 1 Marine Expeditionary Force, Fleet Marine Force, Pacific in the Kuwait Theater of Operations. From 13 January 1991 to 23 February 1991, Captain Wilborn repeatedly exposed himself to hostile antiaircraft artillery and surface to air missile fire while delivering ordnance with devastating effect on enemy concentrations. This effort and sacrifice of his own personal safety was continuous throughout the period and resulted in the destruction of enemy positions in the direct route of oncoming Marine ground forces. His actions enabled Marines to close with and destroy the enemy or bypass positions that would have directly affected their movement and safety. In the course of this action, he flew 38 mission over hostile territory while conducting Close Air Support and Battlefield Air Interdiction. His missions were an integral part of the Squadron's operations which delivered over two million pounds of ordnance in 1240 combat hours. His ultimate sacrifice in this combined effort helped to bring the war in the Gulf to its successful end in only 43 days. Captain Newton Wilborn III, USMC, was killed in action on 23 February 1991. For his heoric actions, Captain Wilborn was posthumously awarded the Navy Commendation Medal with Combat V for valor.