KIA April 10, 2004
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Assigned to 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California
LCpl John Sims died April 10, 2004, from injuries sustained by hostile fire in Anbar Province, Iraq. He is survived by his father, John Sr.; mother, Margaret and step-father, Jerry Kellum; two sisters, Daphne and Wendy; a half brother and three stepsisters.
John was a high school wrestler and was among three high school buddies who joined the Marine Corps on the same day after graduating from Benjamin Russell High School in 2001. A few months later, when terrorists struck on September 11th, he was ready to fight. Although he was only about 5’4” tall, he was known to be a good-natured prankster but very tough with a big heart. Two of his favorite sayings were, “That didn’t hurt” And “I ain’t scared.” While in Iraq, his nickname became “Lunchbox” due to the fact that he was never seen without food.
He worked at a fast food restaurant before entering the service. When he saw his friends in the drive-thru, he would get on the loudspeaker and tell them there was no food left and to try another place, friends recalled. His mother explained, “He said that if he’d stayed here, that he would’ve never made anything out of himself…and the Marines were the only ones who could force him to make something out of himself.” He loved the Marines, so much that when the time came for his previous unit to be deployed to Iraq, he transferred back into the unit and went with them in February 2004. He was killed two months after arriving to the combat zone. Upon learning of her son’s death, John’s mother said, “My son died doing what he wanted to do, and that was to be a Marine.”
LCpl John Sims Jr. was 21 years old from Alexander City, Alabama.
One of the first paintings produced by artist, Phil Taylor, original portrait was delivered in January 2008 to his mother’s home in Alexander City, Alabama.
Sponsored for family by:
Pro-Tech Services, Ralph Nasca, Lewisville, Texas