Two prominent African-American attorneys, both of whom who served in our Corps in the late 1960s and 1970s, recently passed away. By a strange coincidence, they were both born in the same year, only months apart, and died within days of each other. Both attended the same Judge Advocate Officer Basic Class in 1969, and both went on to have extraordinarily successful careers in law and in government.
John Clay Smith Jr. was born in Omaha, Nebraska, in April 1942. He attended Creighton University, where he participated in the Reserve Officer Training Corps program and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Adjutant General’s Corps after graduating in 1964. He then entered Howard University’s law school, where he was class president and graduated in 1967.
Then Captain Smith entered our Corps in 1969, and served four years of active duty as a judge advocate before leaving active duty in 1973. The following year, he joined the Federal Communications Commission, where he later served as associate general counsel. In 1978, President Jimmy Carter named him to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), where he made a name for himself supporting guidelines that protected underrepresented populations in the workplace. Dr. Smith (in addition to his law degree, he had a doctorate from George Washington University) was particularly concerned about sexual harassment in the workplace, which he insisted was “not a figment of the imagination” but a “real problem.” In 1980, Dr. Smith made history when he was elected national president of the 15,000 member Federal Bar Association, the first African-American to hold the office.
After leaving the EEOC, Smith joined Howard University’s law faculty and served as law school dean from 1986 to 1988. He worked tirelessly to enhance Howard’s reputation in the legal community and brought in much needed financial support for the law school. Smith also wrote a book about early black lawyers titled Emancipation: The Making of the Black Lawyer, 1844–1944. Dr. Smith retired from Howard in 2004. He died in Washington, D.C., on 15 February 2018 from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. He was seventy-five years old.
Born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, in June 1942, Togo Dennis West Jr. graduated from Howard University in 1965 and then went on to receive his law degree from that same institution in 1968. West entered the Corps in 1969, in the same Judge Advocate Officer Basic Class as Smith. But while Dr. Smith served his tour in our Corps in uniform, Captain West entered the Honors Program in the Department of the Army Office of the General Counsel. Consequently, he spent the next four years in the Pentagon in a coat-and-tie, and dealt with a multitude of complex legal issues of importance to the highest levels of the Army.
When he finished his active duty obligation in 1973, West entered the civilian world. He returned to government service under President Jimmy Carter, when he was the top lawyer in the Department of the Navy and the Defense Department.
In 1993, President Bill Clinton chose Togo West to be the Secretary of the Army. It was a turbulent period in Army history, as the Army was reducing from eighteen to ten active divisions, reorganizing the Army Reserve, and implementing the Clinton administration’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.
Secretary West received much praise for his work as the top Army official and this played a part in his selection to be the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA) in 1998. His tenure at the VA, however, was controversial. While he was credited with pushing more than $3 billion into the agency’s budget, an inspector general’s report found he rented limousines and chartered military airplanes against government rules. He resigned in 2000.
In 2007, following a series of articles published in the Washington Post about the care of Soldiers at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Mr. West returned to government service as part of an investigation into the facility. He died on 8 March 2018 while on a cruise in the Caribbean. He was seventy-five years old.
Colonel (Retired) John Jay Douglass
Colonel (COL) (Ret.) John Jay Douglass, a larger-than-life personality in the history of our Corps, died on 22 December 2018 at his home in Charlottesville, Virginia. He was ninety-six years old.
Born in Lincoln, Nebraska, John Jay (he insisted that he be called “John Jay” and would not answer to “John” or “Jay”) graduated from the University of Nebraska and entered the Army in 1943. Second Lieutenant Douglass taught for a year at The Infantry School at Fort Benning before being transferred to the Caribbean Defense Command, where he served first as an infantry company commander and later as the command’s public relations officer.
In 1947, John Jay obtained a Regular Army commission and then attended law school at the Army’s expense. He graduated from the University of Michigan in 1952 and transferred to our Corps.
Then Captain Douglass’s first assignment as an Army lawyer was in Korea. At the end of hostilities, he transferred to Japan, where he served until returning to the United States in 1953. Colonel Douglass subsequently served in Heidelberg at the Office of the Judge Advocate, U.S. Army, Europe (1963–1966) and was the Staff Judge Advocate, Fort Riley, Kansas (1966–1968) before deploying to Vietnam in 1968 to assume duties as the Staff Judge Advocate, U.S. Army, Vietnam (USARV). His time in Southeast Asia was challenging because, after the passage of the Military Justice Act of 1968, COL Douglass was responsible for re-organizing the delivery of legal services for more than 300,000 Soldiers serving as part of USARV. When the many changes in the Military Justice Act were effective on 1 August 1969 (e.g., creation of the position of military judge, and the appearance of trial and defense counsel at special courts-martial), USARV was ready because of COL Douglass’s preparations.
After returning to the United States, COL Douglass spent a year as a trial judge before assuming duties as the Commandant, The Judge Advocate General’s School (TJAGSA). During his long tenure (he served from June 1970 to January 1974), Douglass began a number of far-reaching and long-lasting initiatives. It was his idea to create a new monthly publication, which he named The Army Lawyer; it continues today, albeit in a bi-monthly format. John Jay also began the Senior Officers Legal Orientation and started the General Officers Legal Orientation (known colloquially as “SOLO” and “GOLO”), both of which are still with us. Finally, when the University of Virginia decided to move its law school to the North Grounds, and offered to build a separate building for TJAGSA, COL Douglass spent hours with the architects on the project designing the new school. He insisted that the new building have a club on the fifth floor, a Post Exchange, and a two-floor Bachelor Officers Quarters. Douglass also made certain that the windows in the Commandant’s office had a clear view of Jefferson’s Monticello.
After retiring with thirty-one years of service in 1974, COL Douglass was named Dean of the National College of District Attorneys at the University of Houston, which was a joint project of the American Bar Association, the National District Attorneys Association, and the Association of American Trial Lawyers. He retired from that position in 1994.
Among his many honors and awards were: Eagle Scout (1937); Order of the Coif (1952); Army Distinguished Service Medal (1971); and Nebraska Alumni Association Achievement Award (2002).
He was a member of the Texas and Nebraska State Bars and was very active in the American Bar Association. Colonel Douglass was particularly proud of his role in founding the Retired Association of Judge Advocates (RAJA), a social organization consisting of retired Active, Reserve, and Guard judge advocates. He served as its first president for many years.
Colonel Douglass was preceded in death by his wife of sixty-eight years, Margaret “Papoose” Pickering. He is survived by children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.
John Jay Douglass is the last of the generation of judge advocates who served in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, and he will be missed by all who knew him.
Colonel (Retired) William V. Adams
Colonel (COL) (Ret.) William “Bill” V. Adams died on 15 July 2018. He was sixty-nine years old. Bill was born 6 November 1948. He is survived by his wife, Nancy; and other family members.
Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Robert Byers
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) (Ret.) Robert “Bob” Byers died 3 July 2018 in San Antonio, Texas. He was eighty-five years old.
Born in Marshalltown, Iowa, on 29 August 1932, he earned his J.D. from the University of Iowa in 1959. He then accepted a commission in the JAG Corps in February 1960. Lieutenant Colonel Byers subsequently served a twenty-year career as an Army lawyer. His assignments included Charlottesville, Virginia; Fort Lewis, Washington; and Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Lieutenant Colonel Byers also served overseas in Heidelberg and Munich, Germany. After retiring from the JAG Corps, he went into private practice, representing abused and neglected children.
Bob is survived by his wife, Nancy; his four grandchildren, Chase & Natalie Dickinson and Taylor & Jamie Byers; granddaughters-in-law, Sarah Dickinson and Kayla Byers; daughters-in-law, Cindy Byers & Kathy Byers; and his beloved dogs Dudley, Willie, and Annie.
Colonel (Retired) Harry St. George Tucker Carmichael III
Colonel (COL) (Ret.) “Mike” Carmichael died in Lexington, Virginia, on 30 November 2018. He was seventy-nine years old and had been suffering from Parkinson’s Disease for years.
Born on 26 August 1939 in Atlanta, Georgia, Mike had a varied and adventurous childhood, having lived in Charleston, West Virginia, where his maternal great-grandfather had been governor; in Greece, where his father was a civil engineer helping with reconstruction after World War II; and in Kentucky, where his family had homes in Versailles and Lexington.
Mike graduated from Virginia Military Institute in 1961, and from the University of Kentucky’s College of Law. He then entered our Corps, serving first in Vietnam. Remaining on active duty, COL Carmichael had a varied career, including tours at Fort Campbell, and the Pentagon. He also served as the Deputy Staff Judge Advocate for the XVIII Airborne Corps in Fort Bragg, and as the Staff Judge Advocate for the 172nd Infantry in Fort Richardson, Alaska. He completed his career as an Army lawyer as an Associate Judge for the U.S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals in Falls Church, Virginia.
Mike retired in 1989 and assumed duties as the Senior Staff Attorney—and later Counsel—for the newly created Court of Veterans Appeals, which provided judicial review for veterans whose disability claims had been denied by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Upon retiring from the court, he was the first recipient of its Outstanding Achievement Award.
Colonel Carmichael is survived by Suzanne, his wife of fifty-one years; daughter, Anne Lovelace; son, Tucker; and four grandchildren.
Brigadier General (Retired) James P. Cullen
Brigadier General (BG) (Ret.) James P. Cullen died on 8 December 2017. He was seventy-two years old. Born on 27 January 1945 in Queens, New York, he graduated from Iona College and St. John’s University School of Law.
Brigadier General Cullen served in the Army Reserve for more than twenty-five years. He had served as commander of the 4th Legal Support Operation and was a founding board member of the 4th JAG Officers Association. Prior to retirement in 1996, he was the Chief Judge of the Army Court of Criminal Appeals.
After retirement, BG Cullen devoted himself to human rights issues. He was co-founder and the first president of the Brehon Law Society, served on the Advisory Board of Human Rights First, and was the treasurer of the Construction Industry World Trade Center Disaster Relief Fund. Additionally, BG Cullen was instrumental in assembling a group of retired military officers to speak out against the use of torture and call for the closure of the Guantanamo prison. President Barack Obama called this group “outstanding Americans.” Brigadier General Cullen played an active role in the negotiation of the Good Friday Agreement in an effort to bring peace to Ireland. He acted as an international civil rights monitor in Northern Ireland, and testified before Congress in the case of murdered human rights lawyer, Patrick Finucane.
Brigadier General Cullen is survived by his partner, Catherine Kelly; his children, Tara Carbonaro (husband Salvatore), Kerry Bartelemucci (husband Lawrence), Erin Stilp (husband Erik), Sean Cullen (wife Lindsey); their mother, Traudy Cullen; and eight grandchildren.
Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Christina Ekman
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) (Ret.) Christina “Chrissy” Ekman died on 7 March 2018. She was fifty-two years old and had battled cancer for some years. After graduating from James Madison University in 1987, LTC Ekman was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Transportation Corps. She began her Army career as a Logistics and Motor Pool officer at SHAPE in Belgium before serving as an Installation Transportation Officer, Adjutant, and Battalion S-1.
Lieutenant Colonel Ekman entered the JAG Corps after obtaining her J.D. at Seattle University School of Law. Her first assignment as an Army lawyer was as trial counsel at Camp Stanley, Korea. She subsequently served as the Chief of Criminal Law and Chief of Claims at Fort Lee, Virginia. After completing the Graduate Course, LTC Ekman remained in Charlottesville, where she taught criminal law. Lieutenant Colonel Ekman completed resident Command and General Staff College before serving as the Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, U.S. Armor Center and Fort Knox. Her final assignment was as the Chief, Judge Advocate Recruiting Office. Lieutenant Colonel Ekman retired in 2008.
Lieutenant Colonel Ekman is survived by her husband of eighteen years, Colonel Andrew J. Glass; her son, William Michael Ekman Glass; her parents, Colonel (Retired) Michael E. Ekman and Katherine “Ann” H. Ekman; sisters, Patricia “Patty” E. Dokken (husband Tim), Katherine “Katie” E. Hines (husband Matt); and brother, Thomas “Tom” M.W. Ekman (wife Kristin).
Major Christopher Roan Evans
Major (MAJ) Christopher R. Evans died on 14 February 2017. He was thirty-nine years old. Born on 3 April 1977 in Iberia, Louisiana, he received his B.A. from Millsaps College and his J.D. from the Mississippi College of Law in 2002. Major Evans served as a judge advocate in the Army National Guard and deployed to Iraq in 2010. His last assignment was with the 399th JAG, Trial Defense Team, New Orleans, Louisiana.
Colonel (Retired) Vincent James Faggioli
Colonel (COL) (Ret.) Vincent J. “Vince” Faggioli died on 2 October 2018 at his home in Hawaii. He was seventy-one years old.
Born in Salt Lake City on 12 November 1946, he earned a B.S. in Political Science from the University of Utah. He subsequently earned an M.A. in Public Administration, along with a J.D. He also had an LL.M. in Tax and Government Contracts and an LL.M. in International Law.
Colonel Faggioli served thirty years in our Corps and, after retiring from active duty, continued his service as a civilian attorney. Colonel Faggioli retired a second time after fourteen years of civilian service. He was a member of the Senior Executive Service at the time of his second retirement.
He is survived by his wife, Karen Anne; son, Vincent James II (wife Amanda); brothers, David Lamar and Douglas; and granddaughters, Amelia Anne and Evangeline Lee.
Brigadier General (Retired) Patrick Finnegan
Brigadier General (BG) (Ret.) Patrick “Pat” Finnegan died on 2 July 2018. He was sixty-eight years old. Born on 20 September 1949 in Fukuoka, Japan, he was the son of Colonel (Ret.) John B. Finnegan.
Pat spent his childhood traveling the globe. He then entered the United States Military Academy at West Point, from which he graduated in 1971. Due to his high class standing, then Second Lieutenant Finnegan went immediately to graduate school. In 1973, he received an M.A. in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School for Government.
After a three year tour as an Infantry officer, BG Finnegan began law school as a FLEP at the University of Virginia, from which he earned his J.D. in 1979. His first assignment as a judge advocate was in Germany with the 8th Infantry Division. Pat then served in assignments of increasing importance and responsibility, including: Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, XVIII Airborne Corps; Legal Advisor, Joint Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg; Staff Judge Advocate, U.S. Special Operations Command, MacDill Air Force Base; and Legal Advisor, U.S. European Command. BG Finnegan served in Operations Desert Storm, Desert Shield, and Hawkeye.
Brigadier General Finnegan’s distinguished Army career culminated with his return to West Point in 1998. He served as professor and head of the Department of Law until leaving that position to accept an appointment as the 12th Dean of the Academic Board in 2005. He retired five years later in 2010.
Brigadier General Finnegan then became the President of Longwood University, located in Farmville, Virginia. At Longwood, BG Finnegan championed efforts to expand international educational opportunities for students and led the university’s transition from Division I independent status into the Big South Conference. He retired from that position in 2012.
Brigadier General Finnegan is survived by his wife, Joan; daughters, Jenna and Katie; and several grandchildren.
Pat was greatly admired by all who knew him. He influenced generations of judge advocates and will be greatly missed.
Major (Retired) Russell James Fontenot
Major (MAJ) (Ret.) Russell James Fontenot died on 21 March 2018 after a two-year battle with cancer. He was born in Jennings, Louisiana. He earned both his B.A. and J.D. from Louisiana State University, and served as an officer in various assignments, including the Infantry and the Judge Advocate General’s Corps. He also deployed to Vietnam from 1971–1972.
Major Fontenot retired in 1989 after twenty-three years of active duty service. He returned to work for the Army as a civilian attorney at William Beaumont Army Medical Center, Fort Bliss, Texas. He retired in 2006 to Cedar Park, Texas, and enjoyed traveling and camping with his family, reading, and researching family history.
Major Fontenot is survived by his wife of fifty-two years, Martha; daughters, Tracey and Jolie; sons, David and Corey; and grandchildren, Katrina, Isaac, and Cora.
Lieutenant Colonel Gerald R. Fox
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Gerald R. Fox died on 4 September 2017. He was fifty-six years old. Born on 20 April 1961, in Baltimore, Maryland, he grew up in Orlando, Florida. In 1981, he enlisted in the Army. He was a staff sergeant when he left active duty to study law. Lieutenant Colonel Fox received his J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1995.
In 1999, LTC Fox accepted a position as Assistant State Public Defender. He was elected to the office of District Attorney in 2006 and was re-elected in 2008, 2012, and again in 2016.
Lieutenant Colonel Fox joined the Wisconsin Army National Guard in 2003 as a first lieutenant. In 2005, he deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He subsequently served as the Pre-Trial Agreement Attorney in the Central Criminal Court of the Iraq Liaison Office as part of Task Force 134 (Detainee Operations). Lieutenant Colonel Fox later graduated from the Military Judges Course. His legal excellence was recognized with the Army National Guard Trial Defense Service Excellence Award, and the Colonel Barnett Leadership Award.
Lieutenant Colonel Fox is survived by his wife of twenty-eight years, Susan; mother, Joyce “Liz” Bailey; and brother, Doug Fox (wife Sidney).
Captain Charles “Chip” Ladd
Captain (CPT) Charles “Chip” Ladd, died on 1 May 2018. He was thirty-five years old. The son of Colonel Edward T. Ladd (U.S. Air Force, Retired) of Union City, California, and Dr. Elizabeth (King) Ladd of Fremont, California, Chip Ladd grew up in Union City, Tennessee.
Captain Ladd graduated with a B.A. in Aeronautical Studies from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2005. He received his J.D. from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 2009.
Captain Ladd began his military career in 2002, when he joined the Air Force as a Predator UAV Systems Technician at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. He deployed in 2003 to Pakistan to launch and recover UAVs, and deployed again in 2004 to Iraq. Captain Ladd joined the Tennessee National Guard in 2007 as an Intelligence Officer, and deployed to Iraq again in 2009. He transferred to the Army JAG Corps in 2011. Chip was Air Assault and Airborne qualified. He was also fluent in Spanish. At the time of his death, he was serving as a trial defense counsel at Fort Bliss, Texas.
Captain Ladd is survived by his daughter, Katherine Ladd, of Texas; siblings, Major Teddy Ladd (Air Force) (wife Emily), John Ladd, James Ladd, and Melena (Ladd) Meese; and parents, Dr. Elizabeth Ladd and Colonel (Ret.) Edward Ladd.
Major (Retired) Carla T. Johnson
Major (MAJ) (Ret.) Carla T. Johnson died on 9 January 2017 in Richmond, Virginia. She was fifty years old. Born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, she was an officer in the Signal Corps prior to entering the JAG Corps. Major Johnson earned a B.A. from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from Texas Southern University.
Major Johnson served in our Corps in a variety of assignments, including: Legal Assistance Attorney, Camp Casey, Korea; Trial Counsel, Eighth U.S. Army, Yongsan, Korea; Recruiting Officer, Judge Advocate Recruiting Office, Fort Belvoir, Virginia; Administrative Law Attorney, Fort Lee, Virginia; Trial Counsel and Senior Defense Counsel, 3d Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia; and Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.
After retiring from the Army in 2014, Carla worked as a civilian attorney with the Defense Contract Audit Agency, Office of the General Counsel, Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
Carla is survived by her husband, Cornell; daughters, Cayla and Camryn Peters; and sons, Brendan, Kristopher, and Kyle Johnson.
Lieutenant Colonel Sally MacDonald
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Sally MacDonald died on 11 September 2017. She was forty-two years old. Born on 9 August 1975 in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, she received her B.S. in Social Science from Towson University in 1998, and her J.D. from the University of Maryland in 2002. Lieutenant Colonel McDonald received her LL.M. from The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School (TJAGLCS) in 2011.
At the time of her death, LTC MacDonald was the Associate Dean of Students at TJAGLCS. Prior to this assignment, she served as the Chief of Military Justice, XVIII Airborne Corps at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Other assignments included Fort Hood, Texas; Iraq; Fort Sam Houston; and Wiesbaden, Germany. Her military awards included the Legion of Merit and Bronze Star Medal.
Sally MacDonald was a running enthusiast, and had completed the Marine Corps Marathon and the Baltimore Marathon. She also regularly participated in the Army Ten Miler. Lieutenant Colonel MacDonald is survived by her son, Ian Nixon; brother, Ian MacDonald; mother, Mary MacDonald; and father, Bruce MacDonald.
Lieutenant Colonel MacDonald was an extraordinarily popular officer who was admired by her superiors, peers, and subordinates alike. Her untimely death was the result of a brain aneurism suffered while on active duty. Her death was a shock to all who knew her.
Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Michael McWright
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) (Ret.) Michael McWright died on 3 September 2017. He was fifty-three years old. Born on 14 November 1963, he received his B.A. from James Madison University in 1985 and his J.D. from Ohio Northern University in 1988. He also earned an LL.M. from TJAGSA in 1998. Prior to his untimely death, LTC McWright served as an administrative law attorney at U.S. Army Cadet Command, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
Colonel (Retired) Robert Mitchell Nutt
Colonel (Ret.) Robert Mitchell Nutt died on 22 July 2018. He was eighty-one years old. Born on 5 July 1937 in Hot Springs, Arkansas, he attended the University of Arkansas, from which he earned both his B.A. and J.D. degrees. Colonel Nutt served twenty-two years in the JAG Corps. He is survived by his wife, Carol.
Captain John Darby O’Brien
Captain (CPT) John Darby O’Brien died on 30 March 2018. He was seventy-seven years old. Born 10 July 1940, in Hannibal, Missouri, his parents were James F. O’Brien and Helen Elizabeth Wear.
Following his graduation from Creighton University School of Law, CPT O’Brien entered the JAG Corps. He deployed to Vietnam, where he joined the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for his exemplary service in Vietnam. Upon his return to the U.S., O’Brien left active duty and settled in Las Vegas, Nevada.
He took and passed the Nevada Bar in 1969 and became a Deputy District Attorney in the Clark County District Attorney’s Office. Mr. O’Brien was later named United States Magistrate in 1978, and in 1985, entered private practice. During his legal career, Mr. O’Brien was President of the Nevada State Bar, Nevada State Chair for the American College of Trial Lawyers, and served on numerous Bar and Bench committees for the Nevada Supreme Court.
Mr. O’Brien was one of the founding trustees of The Alexander Dawson School at Rainbow Mountain in Las Vegas and The Dawson School in Lafayette, Colorado. Both schools are dedicated to providing their students with a learning environment that promotes academic excellence as well as honesty and integrity in all aspects of their personal lives.
Mr. O’Brien is survived by his brothers, James, Matt, Louie, and Charlie O’Brien; nephews, James and Sammy; nieces, Nan and Meghan; and his devoted friend of over fifty years, Lynn Cibel of Washington, D.C.
Sergeant First Class Zerion Dexter Simpson Jr.
Sergeant First Class (SFC) Simpson died on 7 September 2018. He was fifty-three years old. Born in Groveland, Florida, he enlisted in the Army Reserve in 1991, and later transferred to the Active Guard Reserve (AGR). He subsequently served in a variety of assignments throughout his career, including: 174th Legal Operations Detachment, Miami, Florida; 3d Infantry Division (Mechanized), Fort Stewart, Georgia; U.S. Army Reserve Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; and 139th Legal Operations Detachment, Nashville, Tennessee. He also served as the AGR Training and Operations Noncommissioned Officer, 128th Legal Operations Detachment, Mustang, Oklahoma.
Sergeant First Class Simpson is survived by his daughter, Blair N. Simpson; his son, Zerion Dexter Simpson III; his mother, Ethel Lee Reed; his father, Zerion Dexter Simpson; his sisters, Dr. Cynthia Reese, Gwendolyn Jones (husband Joseph), Susie Reed, Pamela Drummond, and Rosa Winston (husband Phillip); his brothers, Gregory Simpson (wife Alice) and Clifford Simpson; as well as uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces, and cousins.
Lieutenant Colonel Jay Thoman
Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Jay Thoman passed away on 30 April 2018. He was running near the Pentagon when he was struck and killed by an automobile. Jay was forty-four years old. Born in California on 24 April 1974, LTC Thoman graduated from Gonzaga University in 1996 with a B.A. in Political Science. He subsequently earned his J.D. from Willamette University in 2000, and his LL.M. from TJAGLCS in 2009.
Lieutenant Colonel Thoman began his active duty career in 2000. At the time of his death, he was serving as the Chief of the Policy Division within the Criminal Law Division of the Office of The Judge Advocate General. His prior assignments included Fort Benning, Fort Bragg, Fort Leonard Wood, and TJAGLCS (where he taught criminal law). Lieutenant Colonel Thoman also served in Hawaii, Germany, and Iraq.
Lieutenant Colonel Thoman is survived by his wife, Jennifer; daughters, Julie and Josephine; son, Joshua; and his parents, Jay and Cynthia.