Our community lost a truly great American hero with the passing of Jack Simpson. His life was an American story. He grew up hunting and fishing in rural Pennsylvania. He served in the infantry in World War II. He saw action at Anzio, as the struggle for the Allies beachhead lasted weeks. He fought across Italy and Southern France. As a soldier, he served our country with devotion and honor. After the war, Jack followed his dream and became an FBI agent. Clearly this was an accomplishment that spoke volumes about his intelligence, his capacity for hard work and his determination.

While at the FBI Jack worked many important and sometimes infamous cases but his best work was in the case of the murder of Lt. Col. Lemuel Penn. In 1964, Col. Penn was murdered by KKK members while driving from Fort Benning to his home in Washington, D.C. Jack solved the case, brought the perpetrators to justice and in the process busted the KKK’s strength in eastern Georgia. Few alive today can truly appreciate the enormous courage Jack Simpson showed during this investigation.

After honorably retiring from the FBI, Jack became an enormous resource for both the Rockdale and Newton County law enforcement communities. He also found time to write books and pen newspaper columns. His writings were always entertaining, positive and encouraging.

Jack had a wife and family he adored. Our sympathies go to them. Jack is gone, but many of us will never forget him. All of us benefited from his great legacy to his country and his home, Conyers.

Robert Mumford


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I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

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