William Simpson
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Simpson, William M., a structural engineer extraordinaire, died on May 12, 2009 of natural causes in Seattle, WA. Born on June 18, 1921 in Ottumwa, Iowa, he moved to Southern California at an early age and was the only child of Stuart and Marie Simpson. He leaves behind four children and six grandchildren. Mr. Simpson was an avid sports fan and an athlete. He played high school basketball which earned him a full college scholarship. One of his favorite memories was playing against Jackie Robinson. He graduated at the top of his class in Structural Engineering at the University of Colorado, Fort Collins in 1946, and was the Class President and Captain of the University basketball team. He enjoyed an illustrious career at William M. Simpson, a Consulting Structural Engineering firm which he founded in 1957 in South Pasadena then relocated to Newport Beach, CA in 1968. The firm continues to operate successfully in Lake Forest, CA as one of his legacies. Mr. Simpson participated in variety of projects such as Dodger Stadium, Pontiac Stadium, the Haj Terminal in Saudi Arabia and many other national and international projects throughout his career. He was also a great mentor to many successful Architects and Engineers throughout his life. He helped pioneer innovative engineering techniques such as enhancing the slender-wall design concept. He was the chairman of the ACI - SEASC Task Committee on Slender Wall Design in the early 1980s which resulted to the publication of "The Green Book". In 2002, he was recognized with the TCA's Peter Courtois Memorial Award, for his contribution to the advancement of the tilt-up industry for more than half a century. After his retirement in 1996, Mr. Simpson continued to enjoy engineering challenges in Kitsap County, WA. All who knew him are welcome to join us at his Memorial Service on Saturday June 27, 2009 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm at: Newport Sea Base – Boy Scouts of America 1931 W. Coast Highway Newport beach, CA 92663. Additional parking will be available at the vacant restaurant lot located at: 2141 W. Coast Highway Newport Beach, CA 92663. In accordance with his family's request, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to a charity of your choice. He will be greatly missed by his family and countless friends!

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Published in Orange County Register on Jun. 7, 2009.
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2 entries
June 1, 2019
I just read what I wrote ten years ago. I feel the same way now.
Tom Holtom
June 25, 2009
Bill was one of the finest men I have had the pleasure to work with and clearly the best Structural Engineer I dealt with in my many years of Project Management. After all his successes with sophisticated concrete and steel structures, I know he enjoyed my unusual and somewhat screwy themed projects in Las Vegas and with Walt Disney Imagineering. I will sincerely miss him and his three piece suits. He was a class act.
Tom Holtom
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