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In Loving Memory

James William Clepper

February 28, 1925 – January 16, 2021

James William Clepper, 95, passed from this life on Saturday January 16, 2021.

James was born on February 28, 1925 in Houston, Texas to James Duncan Clepper and Lela Myrtle Briers Clepper.  He married his wife of 70 years, Marilyn Nagel Clepper, on September 9, 1950.

Jim was a proud Veteran of the United States Navy Submarine service for 14 years.  He served in both WWII and the Korean War and was the last survivor of the USS Darter, which was lost during conflict in the South Pacific.  He also served on several other submarines during the war including the USS Menhaden.  Jim achieved the rank of Gunners Mate 2nd Class during his tour of duty on the submarines, where he earned his submarine combat patrol badge.  Later in life, he was a member of Submarine Veterans of World War II.

After the war Jim worked in the oil fields and later as a NASA contractor.

He loved fishing on the Gulf Coast with his son, cousins and friends and later with his Grandsons.

He is survived by his wife, Marilyn, his son Mike Clepper, daughters Penny Clepper, and Mary Ann Alexander and husband Bob. His Grandchildren Carey Dunn and husband Mike, Lela Thordsen and husband Steven, Bryan Alexander and wife Andrea, Tim Alexander and wife Jennifer, David Alexander and wife Molly, and Chris Alexander and fiancée Ali.  As well as eight Great Grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his parents James and Lela Clepper, his sister Lucille Mehrkan and brother Ed Clepper.

Funeral services will be held Thursday, January 21, 2021 at 10:00 A.M. at Jeter Memorial Funeral Home with Bob Alexander officiating. Burial will follow in the Houston National Cemetery at a later date.

Condolences may be sent to the Clepper family in care of Jeter Memorial Funeral Home at www.jeterfuneralhome.com.

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2 thoughts on “James William Clepper”

  1. So sorry to hear about Uncle Jimmy. I have had a lot of good times with Uncle Jim. We went on a number of fishing trips together. Always great fun and shared a common interest in Electronics. I learned a lot from him and he will be missed.

    He had a long life of service. His contributions during WWII his submarine service. Later Contributions to the US Space program continuing with his work in keeping the instruments running for our law enforcement and scientific establishments servicing Mass Spectrometer's and other instruments.

    All the time taking care of his beloved family and raising three great kits.
    Uncle Jim will be missed by all.

  2. I did not know Jim until I returned to our hometown and met Jim at a SUBVETS meeting. We had an instant connection, first obviously, as we were both submarine veterans but my first boat was the USS Darter SS 576 named after the original USS Darter which ran hard aground on Bombay Shoal off Palawan passage. Darter had just fired 6 torpedoes at a heavy cruiser with 5 hits, reversed course and fired 4 stern tubes at a second heavy cruiser with 3 hits. About 6 hours later around midnight, running on the surface at 17 knots to regain attack position she ran aground. The entire crew was rescued by the USS Dace. Why is this little history lesson important, Jim was a Gunner’s Mate on the Darter and stood watch in the torpedo rooms, probably the after room. They reloaded the 10 empty tubes while depth charges were being drooped by Japanese destroyers and started after the rest of the armada. As the crew was being rescued Jim rigged the destruction charges, and left to be rescued. If you knew Jim you knew a real hero, I was privileged to know him! Rest your oars, shipmate, we have the watch!

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311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546


311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546

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