5-Year-Old Who Dreamed Of Being ‘Army Man’ Dies, Family Asks Military To Attend Funeral

Prayers for Oakley Nimmo / Facebook

If you ever met 5-year-old River “Oakley” Nimmo, you knew he had big dreams to join the Army one day. He called himself an “Army Man,” and even had some camouflage gear he loved to wear.


Oakley was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma cancer when he was just two years old. He went through chemo and radiation and in June 2017, he was cancer-free. Just one month later, he went in for a routine check-up where doctors found a swollen lymph node. The Neuroblastoma had relapsed.

In February 2019, the Neuroblastoma spread to his bones, specifically in his spine, knee, skull, pelvis, and clavicle.

On his fifth birthday, May 6, 2019, his family shared on their public Facebook page that Oakley was surprised by a real-life “Army Guy,” his Uncle Adam.


On June 15, Oakley’s parents decided to put Oakley in hospice care while they were at Arkansas Children’s Hospital.

Oakley’s doctors are thinking that he is in the midst of liver failure. His bilirubin has quadrupled since Tuesday. He is yellow all over…We are also thinking that Oakley’s tumors have grown back full force. He has multiple lumps on his head now that have come up within the past few days. He is also complaining of pain in his leg and arm now, which he was not complaining about a few days ago,” his mom wrote.


Oakley fought long and hard, but ultimately, he passed away on June 20 in his mother’s arms.

We are going to give Oakley a full military service in honor of his wish to become an ‘Army Man’ , one day. We ask that any active military members and/or veterans to please attend the funeral in their uniforms,” she wrote in the update.


His service was held Tuesday morning (June 25) at 10am in Camden, Arkansas, and we hope that there was a room filled with military in their dress uniforms, just as Oakley would have wanted.

The Arkansas National Guard made a Facebook post announcing that they promoted Oakley to the rank of “Honorary Colonel, with an effective date of June 20, 2019, in honor of his life and passion for the United States military.”


One person, knowing about Oakley’s dream of being an “Army Man,” said that Oakley was as brave as any Navy Seal, and was in combat for three of his five years of life.

If you’d like to donate to Oakley’s family, you can do so here.

We will keep Oakley’s family in our prayers.