Major General Leslie A. Simon was born in Memphis, Tennessee on August 11, 1900 and graduated from the United States military Academy in 1924. Of all the outstanding military personnel who should have, and enjoy, the title “Soldier-Scientist,” General Simon was an excellent example of “Soldier-Scientist” in every respect.
Under his directorship, the Ballistic Research Laboratory at Aberdeen Proving Ground grew to a world-renowned group of laboratories. It became one of the leading scientific institutions not only in the Army but also in the country. Under his direction, the laboratories developed the country’s first supersonic wind tunnels. These aerodynamic tools were in high demand for the early guided missiles of the Army, Navy, and Air Force.
The world’s first long-range tracking telescopes for tracking guided missiles were developed while he was at the Ballistic Research Laboratory. He oversaw the creation (jointly with the University of Pennsylvania) of the ENIAC, the first high-speed digital computer, which led to the so-called “electronic brains” and the present-day electronic computing and accounting industry. General Simon died in October, 1983.