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Jack Simpson

Stories by Jack

JACK SIMPSON: Remembering Anzio

It seems that lately I have become a resident speaker about the Anzio campaign. It hasn’t been my choice and unlike Mrs. Clinton, I do not demand a $300,000 speaker’s fee. People with an interest in World War II history have learned of my participation in the massacre at the Anzio, Italy beachhead in January 1944. They have invited me to tell my story. When time permits, I have obliged.

JACK SIMPSON: 'Jihadi John' a foe who must be defeated

Peter Kassig, humanitarian aid worker, was recently beheaded by ISIS and President Obama called the incident “pure evil.” Of course what ISIS is doing inspires terror.

JACK SIMPSON: Comet landing is history in the making

Not being a scientist, I cannot imagine what went into planning and sending of the lander Philae to a meeting with a comet out in deep space. Anyway, I am among the admirers of the accomplishment of the European Space Agency and its dozen or so contributors.

JACK SIMPSON: Health care workers should honor quarantine rules

Registered Nurse Kaci Hickox made the evening news recently. She volunteered to go to West Africa to render aid to Ebola patients. Upon her return home, she was asked to honor quarantine rules and she felt her rights were being violated because she was not ill.

JACK SIMPSON: Looking to the values of the past

As a senior citizen, I find it comforting to think back upon happier times when some idealism was still taught at home and in our schools

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JACK SIMPSON: The 45th Thunderbirds

One of my coworkers is a member of the Osage Indian Tribe and many of his relatives live in Oklahoma. He heard I was making a speech about World War II and my association with the 45th Infantry Division.

JACK SIMPSON: Boots on the ground

As an old World War II Infantry soldier it has been my experience that once the enemy seized and held territory, we could bomb, shell and fire small arms into the area all we wished. And, when quiet returned, the enemy crawled out of their holes and continued to be in command of territory they held. It took our boots on the ground, and sometimes fighting house-to-house, room-to-room, with rifles, bayonets, and hand grenades to win the battle.

JACK SIMPSON: Be wary of uninvited guests of the stinging variety

Having an allergy to the sting of wasps, which include yellow jackets, I am constantly reminded to be careful around these winged critters.

JACK SIMPSON: Boogie-Woogie Tom

In a recent column, we opted to talk about gambling rather than talking turkey. I guess now is the time to go back and discuss the wild turkeys hanging out in the back yard.

JACK SIMPSON: Hello fall, good-bye summer pests

Fall has just arrived and I knew it before the first chill or the calendar told me so.

JACK SIMPSON: Longing for musical accompaniment on memory lane

What really convinced me totally of my aging was when riding in my car and turning on the radio to find some “good listening” music!

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JACK SIMPSON: Growing older has its benefits

I do like living in a small town. Sometimes when eating in a local restaurant, people will walk up to my table, introduce themselves and tell me they enjoy reading my column. How nice. I do so enjoy sharing their experiences and hearing about them and their families.

JACK SIMPSON: Is 'the King' dying?

A family member just returned from a visit to our hometown in Appalachia. She noted many of the local stores had closed and the economy there was in free fall as coal miners were laid off and were looking for other jobs.

JACK SIMPSON: Gambling comes with many kinds of risks

I’m not a gambler and do not wish to become one. For me, coming out of the Great Depression years, money has been hard to come by unless earned.

JACK SIMPSON: Police body cameras would help answer questions

No question about it. When Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown, if the facts so conclude, law enforcement suffered a major change.

JACK SIMPSON: Command your own ship

Beloved and talented comic Robin Williams, 63 years old, spent decades in struggles with substance abuse and depression. He was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Perhaps it finally overwhelmed him, because he fashioned a noose out of a belt and hung himself, ending his struggle.

JACK SIMPSON: Ebola causes widespread concern

It seems like all of a sudden we are hearing more than we want to hear about the Ebola virus disease. It has pushed its way onto our television screens and on the front pages of our newspapers.

JACK SIMPSON: Fond farewell to loyal friend

We had just finished a real nice birthday family lunch. The ladies were clearing off the table when I made a casual remark. “Has anyone seen Wolfie lately?” Wolfgang was my former very special German shepherd and I had been forced by circumstances to give him away.

JACK SIMPSON: Coal mining a tough way to make a living

It was in the l940s when I was about to graduate from high school. I was wondering what I would do to earn a living. Since my uncles were coal miners, they tried to interest me in digging coal for a paycheck.

JACK SIMPSON: Trouble on the border

While out on the campaign trail fundraising, our president recently went to Colorado for a beer and some pool, after which he headed for Texas. But, he did not head to the border where Gov. Rick Perry says the surge of arriving children from Central America is “a humanitarian crisis.”

JACK SIMPSON: Celebrating two milestones on the same day

July 4th is my birthday and this year I cherished the 90 years I have lived upon this earth!

JACK SIMPSON: A little mixup can have a big impact

We probably do not think much about what a difference one letter of the alphabet can make in our lives.

JACK SIMPSON: The skinny on another 'health' food

My friend Frank and I worked together for years at the Newton County Judicial Center. Our lunch periods frequently fell at the same time, and we got into the habit of having lunch together. After his retirement, we continued meeting for lunch several times a week and we met recently.

JACK SIMPSON: The agony of not knowing who you are

I’m suffering from an identity crisis! Throughout my life, from birth until the present day, I have been Jack to the world. One day last week, I renewed my Georgia drivers license, the one I have had since the 1950s and, in order to get a new license, I had to produce an original of my birth certificate, along with other personal identification.

JACK SIMPSON: VA's treatment of veterans shameful

Many older veterans learning of the latest allegations against the Veterans Administration are having a hard time understanding why an organization that is supposed to provide veteran’s benefits is busy lying and juggling the books in an effort to deny returning vets promised benefits.

JACK SIMPSON: All citizens should contribute to safe, clean community

I do not know how you feel about it, but I like to think my community is occupied by law-abiding individuals and that it is a good place to live.

JACK SIMPSON: Women still have a long way to go for equal rights in some countries

When you look at the status of women in other parts of the world, maybe there is some truth to that ad that tells American females “You have come a long way, baby.” We are proud of the progress made in women’s rights in America and hope for more, particularly in equal pay for equal work.

JACK SIMPSON: Hard to fathom the meanness among us

You have seen it, too, haven’t you? Contemptible, petty, just outright mean stuff going on in our everyday world. Oh, it isn’t only here. No, it is everywhere and some of it causes plain moral outrage.

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JACK SIMPSON: Worries about ineffective antibiotics are real

It seems like people have to worry about some crisis or another every day. Maybe it is an earthquake, fire, tornadoes, floods, political upheavals, etc.

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JACK SIMPSON: New gun law brings many questions

I would guess that the hoopla over Georgia’s new gun law has just begun.

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JACK SIMPSON: Tense situation with Russia

Diplomacy has prevailed so far as Russia, the United States, the European Union and Ukraine have eased crises and compromised to prevent the outbreak of armed conflict. President Obama remains skeptical.

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JACK SIMPSON: Time to rein in Obama's executive powers

I suppose you were among the many Americans who watched when President Obama took his oath of office. For crying out loud, don’t oaths mean anything anymore!

JACK SIMPSON: Relinquishing Internet control not a sign of strength

Are Russia and China licking their chops at the prospect of the United States considering transfer of stewardship of the Internet to the international community?

JACK SIMPSON: Texting and driving can cost you more than personal interaction

This old world is a fast-moving place and time is ever marching on. Old friends have passed and new laws and regulations have us in a tizzy.

JACK SIMPSON: When Joe met Molly

This may or may not be a true story, but the facts are all too familiar.

JACK SIMPSON: Falling victim to 'sitting disease'

There’s no question about it. This long, cold, miserable winter gave me a “sitting disease.”

JACK SIMPSON: Will military cuts leave us too weak to respond when called?

I’m glad to be just an observer and not Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. He has to be concerned with the nation’s financial stress and he has to slash budgets to keep us in line.

JACK SIMPSON: Surviving the storm with a mild case of cabin fever

I was trapped inside for the better part of last week as a treacherous snow and ice storm coated roads, froze on trees, power lines and my driveway!

JACK SIMPSON: Loyal public servant laid to rest

I was shooting the breeze with Corporal Charles Cook in the Newton County Sheriff’s office when he told me the story about Sasha, a certified narcotics detector and K-9 police officer with the Warwick Police Department.

JACK SIMPSON: Trite but true — mother still knows best

I count myself among people who once smoked and who had refused to heed my mother’s warnings not to do so. Why is it kids think they know it all and harm cannot come to them from a bad habit?

JACK SIMPSON: Growing older means collecting experiences

Life is full of simple pleasures. The older I get, the more of them I like to experience.

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JACK SIMPSON: Will Christie go down with the sharks?

My grandson has a degree in marine biology and is a certified diver. He has used his skills and his education to film underwater. Some of his footage has appeared on National Geographic and Discovery channels. He has been swimming with sharks and has seen their reaction to blood in the water.

JACK SIMPSON: Who's your presidential pick?

Do you have some time on your hands? Don’t just twiddle your thumbs. Speculate on who might be future presidential candidates.

JACK SIMPSON: What would Christmas be without a few hassles?

Another Christmas has come and gone. It has been stressful, busy and, at times, frustrating and expensive. However, it has been fun, huh? What would we ever do without such a special holiday to celebrate and spend time with family and friends?

JACK SIMPSON: Crime marches on

It struck me as common sense that a professional car thief would plan each caper carefully. Having stolen before, some degree of efficiency would be expected. Even if he was a pickpocket, a shoplifter, scammer, his goal would be to plan, pull off the theft and stay out of jail.

JACK SIMPSON: Legacy album tells rich history of Sheriff's Office

Have you seen a copy of the new yearbook recently put out by the Newton County Sheriffs Office? I think it is a pretty neat 100-page hardback published by Peachtree Portraits.

JACK SIMPSON: Another airline travel aggravation

I know it is risky writing about something you do not know a great deal about. I’m talking about flying and cell phones. Anyway, I am about to give these topics the old college try.

JACK SIMPSON: Bold move — or historic mistake?

It is a cold, wet, dreary day with even some snowflakes reported in the local area. And, as of this writing, it is a few days before we celebrate Thanksgiving. People wonder if we should give thanks for the recent deal with Iran, where they get relief from sanctions and the world gets a promise that Iran will not develop a bomb and open up its nuclear program.

JACK SIMPSON: Fifty years later, a nation still wonders

They say it was one of the most violent scenes ever recorded. I did not witness it personally, but joined hundreds of other Americans who watched on television as First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy crawled onto that trunk of the presidential limo trying to collect pieces of the president’s head.

JACK SIMPSON: Too much of a good thing

Alvin, his mate, children, grandchildren, family and friends have taken up residence down here in south Rockdale in my yard and around the patio. Oh, it was fine for a while until these chipmunks began to outnumber me.