USS SIMPSON was named in honor of Roger Whitton Simpson (1898–1964). He was a Rear Admiral of the United States Navy, who distinguished himself during World War II.
Roger W. Simpson attended one year at the University of Oregon. Following, he entered the United States Naval Academy in June 1917. Midshipman Simpson served on Ohio (BB-12) which was based on the Atlantic Ocean and part of Atlantic Fleet during World War I. Simpson was commissioned an Ensign during June of 1920, graduating in the class of 1921.
He commanded the Mahan (DD-364) as an LCDR during the Battle of Santa Cruz Islands on October 26, 1942. It was for this action that he received his first Navy Cross. He was then promoted to CDR and received his second Navy Cross while commanding DESDIV 15, made up of the USS Sterett (DD-407), USS Stack (DD-406), and USS Lang (DD-399), which along with 3 ships of DESDIV 12 under Commander Frederick Moosbrugger, sank 3 Japanese destroyers and damaged 1 in the Battle of Vella Gulf, 6-7 August, 1943.
On April 6, 1944, Commodore Simpson commanded Task Flotilla 6. He orchestrated and planned the rescue of over 7,500 Allied prisoners of war and civilians interned in Japanese concentration camps. For this heroic act, RADM Simpson was awarded the Legion of Merit.
Simpson also served tours as Commander, Training Command, Marianas; Commander Fleet Training Group, Western Pacific; Commander, Underway Training Unit, Guam; Commanding Officer, USS Atlanta; and Commanding Officer, Naval Station Treasure Islands.
RADM Simpson's awards include the Navy Cross (with Gold Star for 2nd Award), Silver Star, Legion of Merit, World War I Victory Medal, American Defense Service Medal, American Campaign Medal, World War II Victory Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Asian-Pacific Campaign Medal (with 2 silver stars signifying 10 engagements).