Richard Lee “Rick” Simmons passed away Feb. 12, 2014, in Grass Valley after losing his battling with cancer. He was 73.
Rick was born in Bloomington, Ill., to Melvin George “Jack” Simmons and Mary Lucille Phillips.
He had been a permanent resident of Grass Valley since 1990, and before that lived in Hesperia for many years, working as a cement finisher for his father.
After coming to Grass Valley in 1990, to just “check it out,” he stayed until now and worked for his brother in concrete construction until retiring in 2003.
Rick first fell in love with Northern California when he came up to attend Sacramento University and took class credits toward a possible teaching degree.
He loved gold prospecting, reading and long conversations with most anyone.
Recently, Bear River High school honored his constant loyalty and team spirit through his game attendance and support for more than 23 years. An award is to be given annually, in his name, to a girl and boy athlete as a “team spirit” award in his honor. He knew and kept track of all the players and coaches through the years and lived for the games.
He leaves an eldest brother James (Karen) of Hesperia, Calif.; older brother Arthur (Heneretta) Simmons of Columbus, Ga.; and a younger brother, Howard (Dee) Simmons of Grass Valley; plus many nieces, nephews and 10 cousins that he was raised with, and many high school sports enthusiasts in Nevada County.
Both of his parents and younger sister, Mary Jane Fletcher, preceded him in death.
No services, per his request, are being performed at this time. A family celebration of his life will be at a family gathering in Southern California
The family wishes to thank Crystal Ridge Care Facility and Hospice of the Foothills for their compassionate care of his last few months here in Grass Valley. Donations may be given to Crystal Ridge Care facility or Hospice of the Foothills to help them support this community that he loved so much.