1891 – 1954 (October 21)
James Raymond Simpson, son of George Simpson and Mary Ahearn, was born in Yonkers, New York, on January 21, 1891. He entered the preparatory seminary at Villanova in 1908 and was admitted to the novitiate in 1912. He made his profession of simple vows on June 20, 1913, and was ordained to the priesthood at Saint Charles' Seminary in Overbrook on June 8, 1919, by Archbishop Denis Dougherty.
Father Simpson taught at Saint Augustine's in Havana, Cuba, for two years and then at Saint Rita High School in Chicago, Illinois. In 1923 he was reappointed to Cuba. From 1929 to 1942 he served in our parishes in Los Angeles, California; St. Mary’s, Lawrence; St. Nicholas of Tolentine, Jamaica; and St. Augustine’s, Troy, New York. In 1942, he was named prior and pastor at Saint Mary's in Waterford, New York, and in 1950, he became prior and rector at Saint Paul's in Mechanicville, New York. Serious illness forced his retirement from active ministry in 1953.
Father Simpson was 63 when he died in Saint Peter's Hospital in Albany, New York on October 21, 1954. The Office of the Dead was recited and Solemn Requiem Mass offered on October 25 at St. Thomas of Villanova Church. Father Henry Greenless, O.S.A., Rector Provincial was the celebrant and Father Stephen Lanen, O.S.A. preached. Father Joseph Hickey, O.S.A., Prior General Emeritus, was present. Following the Requiem Mass, Father Simpsoon was buried in the Community Cemetery at Villanova.