Moriarty, James F., SSG

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Last Rank
Staff Sergeant
Last Service Branch
Special Forces
Last Primary MOS
18B-Special Forces Weapons Sergeant
Last MOS Group
Special Forces (Enlisted)
Service Years
2011 - 2016
Official/Unofficial US Army Certificates
Operation Enduring Freedom

Special Forces
Staff Sergeant

One Service Stripe

One Overseas Service Bar

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by COL Samuel Russell to remember Moriarty, James F., SSG.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
Not Specified

Casualty Date
Nov 04, 2016
Hostile, Died of Wounds
Gun, Small Arms Fire
Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
GWOT Fallen
  2016, GWOT Fallen [Verified]

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 Ribbon Bar

Parachutist (Basic)
Special Operations Supervising Diver
Special Forces

 Colleges Attended 
University of Texas at Austin
  2007-2011, University of Texas at Austin
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

JERUSALEM — On Thursday, Staff Sgt. Jimmy Moriarty, an American Special Forces soldier on a training mission in Jordan, called his sister to check in. Everything was “hunky-dory,” as his father put it. In just two weeks, he would be home.

The next day, Sergeant Moriarty died in a hail of gunfire along with two other American military trainers, evidently killed by a member of the same Jordanian armed forces that the United States had sent the soldiers to help.

In an era of continuing danger to American forces overseas, the shooting at the King Faisal air base in southern Jordan still seemed shocking. Jordan, which has worked closely with American military and intelligence services for many years, had largely escaped the sort of violence that has plagued so many of its neighbors.

“We thought Jordan was safe,” James R. Moriarty, the slain sergeant’s father and a trial lawyer from Houston, said by telephone on Saturday.

The killings of the three American soldiers remained publicly unexplained on Saturday. Was it some sort of misunderstanding, as the Jordanian military has asserted? Or was it an intentional attack on Americans by a supposedly friendly soldier?

The United States and Jordan have begun a joint investigation, and a Jordanian official said the two sides were studying video recordings. The shooter was a soldier and was also injured in the exchange, according to the official, who was not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly.

Sergeant Moriarty’s family has expressed doubt about the only account of the shootings given so far. Jordanian officials initially said the three Americans were killed after their vehicle failed to stop as it approached the gate of the base.

“The Jordanian explanation has to be” nonsense, said Mr. Moriarty, a Marine veteran of the Vietnam War. “It’s just not possible. These guys had years in Jordan, were highly motivated, bright. It has all the indices of being a deliberate attack.”

An American Army casualty officer told the family on Saturday that the shooting had been a “friendly-on-friendly” engagement, Mr. Moriarty said. The soldiers had been at a gun range, and were traveling back to the base when someone opened fire, the officer said.

Mr. Moriarty said he wanted answers. “I get so tired of people in the government lying about what happened, and if the Jordanians on that base killed my son, I want to know it and I want the American public to know it,” he said.

The Pentagon offered no additional information on Saturday about the attack, and had not released the names of the slain soldiers as of the afternoon. A year ago, a Jordanian police captain shot and killed two American contractors and three others at a training center in Amman, the capital.

Sergeant Moriarty, 27, grew up in Texas and studied economics at the University of Texas before joining the Army. As part of the 5th Special Forces Group out of Fort Campbell, Ky., he was more than three months into his third tour in Jordan.

He seemed upbeat as he talked with his sister, Melissa, on Thursday. He sent her a photograph of himself wearing a hat with a slogan playing off the presidential campaign: “Make UT Football Great Again.” The two had planned to go to Bogotá, Colombia, for Thanksgiving after he returned from Jordan.

Ms. Moriarty wrote on Facebook that the family was “devastated,” and asked why the United States was still fighting in so many places. “He was a proud soldier and loved his job,” she wrote. “But he was sent to fight a war that we shouldn’t be fighting.”

“How much is enough?” she asked. Referring to the next president of the United States, she added, “Future POTUS, we have your first assignment.”

Ranya Kadri contributed reporting from Amman, Jordan, and Eric Schmitt and Helene Cooper from Washington.


HOUSTON (TX) - Friends of Staff Sgt. James Moriarty gathered to remember the Houston native on Sunday afternoon.

Moriarty was one of three soldiers gunned down outside an Air Force base in Jordan. Moriarty was serving his thirdtour in Jordan with the Army Special Forces 5th Group. His father, who served in the Marines during the Vietnam War, called his son one of the finest soldiers he's ever known.

While the risk of loss is ever-present in military service, many of Moriarty's friends say they stills struggle to accept his death.

"Jimmy was that guy that, it never would have been Jimmy," said Steve Geuther, a fraternity brother of Morarity. "You hear something on the news, but Jimmy would never die. It was how we all thought of him; he was invincible."

Since learning of Moriarty's death Friday, friend AJ Daggett described the grieving process, saying, "you don't believe it, you don't want it to be true, you try to rationalize it, that doesn't work, then you get mad, then it starts over."

Friends say Moriarty had hoped to become a Green Beret, and had a longstanding passion for serving others.

The details of why three soldiers were shot outside the Jordan base are still unfolding. Family members of Moriarty are now preparing for a funeral service this coming weekend.

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