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Adolphus Clark "Ace" Simpson Jr.

1LT in 23rd Headquarters Co


Born 1918 in AL, Died 2017

County of enlistment: Fort McPherson, Atlanta, GA
Other residence(s): Anniston, AL; Birmingham, AL
United States Army, European Theatre of Operations
Occupation before the war: clerks, general office
College education before the war: George Washington Univ. 1 year
Notes: 01296599; 01296593 in Pine Camp roster; birth year is 1918 in WWII Army enlistment record
Source: W. Anderson Notes; Roster of 23d HQ officers, from family of Oscar Seale; Pine Camp roster, 18 Dec 1945; Col John Walker List; photo courtesy of the family

Clark "Ace" Simpson was born on July 9, 1916 in Anniston, AL, the third of four children. The family moved to Birmingham when he was in the primary grades, and he graduated from Woodlawn High School where he sang in the Warblers Choir. He was also active in Boy Scouting. He then went to college at George Washington University and worked as a clerk for the Civil Aeronautics Authority. His Kappa Sigma fraternity brothers first gave him the nickname "Ace."

When he registered for the draft, on October 16, 1940, he was back in Birmingham, working for the Alabama Water Service Co.

He enlisted on November 12, 1941, at which point he gave his profession as clerk, and stated that he had completed one year of college. He completed his preliminary training at Fort McPherson in Georgia, and was then sent to Camp Croft, SC for infantry replacement training. At some point in 1942 he became a 2nd LT, and completed pilot training in Orangeburg and Sumter, SC. He was eventually chosen to be part of the Ghost Army, and served in Europe. After Captain Thomas Wells was killed in action, on March 12, 1945, Ace assumed command of the HQ Company.

He was discharged on December 30, 1945 with the rank of 1st LT and went back to Birmingham. There he met and married Dorothy Minnie "Dot" Norment; they would go on to have two children—Dottie and Clark.

Ace worked in sales and office design for several business supply and furniture companies during his career. He was also an active member of the Independent Presbyterian Church, where he served as a deacon and an elder, and sang in the choir. He was a dedicated golfer until the age of 95, shooting his age over 80 times.

He remained a lifelong friend of fellow Ghost Army veteran Nick Leo, with whom he talked on the phone almost every week.

Ace died on November 5, 2017 at the age of 101. His obituary says that he was "a kind, generous . . . gentleman who loved his family and was loved by them. Ace was an excellent role model of someone who always tried to do the right thing."


1940s in uniform

1940s in flight suit


1920 census

1940 draft card

1941 enlistment record

1941 article in The Birmingham News (AL) re his military service

1943 article in The Birmingham News (AL) re his military service

1947 marriage record

1975-1993 US public records index

2017 obituary

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