Arthur David Simons

Arthur David Simons

New York, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Death 21 May 1979 (aged 60)
Dallas, Dallas County, Texas, USA
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Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida, USA
Plot Section 36, Site 1956
Memorial ID 11175909 · View Source
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United States Army Officer. A career United States Army Ranger and Special Forces Commander, he won national recognition for an American POW rescue attempt during the Vietnam War. The famed Son Tay Raid (Operation Kingpin) was executed during the late PM hours on November 20, 1970. Unknowingly to the rescue force, the POWs had been previously relocated to a new prison camp some 24 kilometers away. The assault was well planned and executed and concluded with a firefight that left more than 150 of the enemy dead. Surprisingly, there were no American losses. Although the rescue attempt failed to recover any American POWs, it lifted the spirits of American prisoners throughout Vietnam. It also sent a clear message to the North Vietnamese that Americans cared about their soldiers and prisoner abuse would not be tolerated. After Son Tay, conditions improved in the camps. Bull Simons last mission was a successful one. After his retirement, Simons was contacted by Ross Perot, then Chairman of Electronic Data Systems (EDS), to plan and conduct a rescue operation to free two EDS employees who were arrested in the Iranian revolution. In February 1979, assisted by a small group of volunteers, Colonel Simons capitalized on the confusion of the revolt and organized a mob in Tehran which stormed Qasr prison where the EDS employees were being held. The two Americans, along with 11,000 Iranian prisoners, were freed. Simons and his party fled across the mountains into Turkey, and subsequently returned to the United States. The movie titled, "On Wings of Eagles," starring Burt Lancaster, chronicles that event.

Bio by: RCB

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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: RCB
  • Added: 15 Jun 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11175909
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Arthur David Simons (28 Jun 1918–21 May 1979), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11175909, citing Barrancas National Cemetery, Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .