jerry simon | Obituaries | messenger-inquirer.com

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Jerry knew Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. He and Brenda spent nights in the Bible and prayer. If you needed prayer, they were the prayer warriors to turn to. Brenda, her children, grandchildren, sisters, brothers, sisters and brothers-in-law, friends… were all around her bed when God called her home on Thursday, April 21, 2022. Tears flooded the bedroom as we were saying our last goodbyes. Parkinson’s disease led to a series of unfortunate events that took him away from us too soon, so unexpectedly.

Dad practiced every day. Staying fit and healthy was very important to him in order to maintain a healthy life during the years of love and support he would provide to his family. He was a mechanic and all of the jobs he held were within three blocks of his mother’s house. He went there every day for lunch and usually stopped at Brenda’s mother’s house, a house apart, and took his children to lunch with him. But after years of maintenance at Baskin Robbins, Ford Tractor and finally at the Owensboro Board of Education’s bus garage, his body was showing wear and tear when he retired at age 62. The only reason he quit one of his pre-retirement jobs was solely due to them closing their doors. At 66, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease which he contracted while serving in the army in Vietnam as a radio controller. He never let his poor health stop him. He went to the garage every day and worked. He was a man of many virtues, and patience was a strength. At 76, it may have taken him an hour to screw a screw in place, but his patience and zeal to fight what he called his ‘condition’ – never Parkinson’s disease, just his ‘condition’ – held him day after day after day… If you brushed him too close or pushed him too close, he would say, “Now be careful. I have this condition, you know. And he smiled and laughed, never complaining, always light-heartedly humorous. Sometimes one of the children would say, “Come on, daddy,” and he would reply with a laugh, “I’m saying to my feet, but they’re not listening”. Then he made them move – slowly but surely. As the Parkinson’s got worse, Brenda still watched him walk towards the garage and as he approached the garage door, he turned, smiled and blew her a kiss which she returned with a big smile – precious moments – ordinary moments — the best because they have always been there… and will always be remembered.

He has restored classic cars into street rods – 1932 Ford five-window coupe, 1934 Chevy, 1940 Ford Coupe to name a few. He still had some of his last restorations in mint condition in the garage, kept clean and safe under a “bubble”. He was cleaning the engines with a long cotton swab. If they didn’t need fixing, they could always use a new cleaning, keeping them ready for the road. Cars were his hobby, but love was his family – his most precious thing. If he wasn’t working in the garage, he was picking up sticks on their 2 acre lot. But when night fell, you could find him and Brenda sitting on the couch side by side watching movies, smiling at each other, stroking each other’s legs. Yeah, give him Brenda, his remotes, a little ice cream, and he was happy. Sometimes they would listen to music and at random times, if a tune hit the spot, they would dance the slow dance of pure love. Brenda always said if all men were like my Jerry, you’d never hear of divorce. He and Brenda started dating right after she returned from Vietnam. It was love at first sight and they have been inseparable ever since.

His hugs were the strongest and longest EVER and he always came back for more – never liked goodbyes. He loved his brothers, his sisters and his mother. He was a strong family man. He was an ever strong protector and in charge of all situations. He would be by your side at all times, and whatever the situation, he would fix it! “You confuse the family, you confuse me”. Her two sons were special in their own way. His firstborn, of course, was not mechanically inclined at all. Then came Jarod, a chip from the old mechanical block, who worked alongside his father in the garage. Even sometimes when dad wasn’t around—like the young boy taking the lawn mower apart—oops—but they put it back together, together. You need landscaping – Scott was the son to call on. Yes, there was a daughter, spoiled rotten Audra — spoiled by everyone, dad, brothers, mom… And still turned out to be the fantastic young woman she is today. Yes, Dad loved them all – stern when needed but always gentle. Growing up, kids always remember going to Opryland for a vacation – other kids were off the beach – we were at Opryland. This was a time before seat belts and they were lying in the back seat, on the floor, anywhere. Just load up and go. I remembered mom and dad driving dated vehicles, but I also remembered that they were still in perfect condition because dad was their mechanic, a very meticulous mechanic. So if you looked under the hoods, they would look better on the street!

Then came the big ones – Papaw was always so playful with them. The girls were decorating his face and filling in his arm tattoos with washable markers, rolling his hair…the boys were rolling their hot wheels in the baseboard, sticking coloring pages in the hallway…things his own kids don’t. were ever allowed to do.

Thus ends the story of a life well lived, a life that will NEVER be forgotten. So, honey, here’s another blown kiss that says, “I see you.” Our next date will be in heaven, together forever.

Jerry is predeceased by his father, Jerome Simon, and his brothers, Donnie Simon and Roger Simon.

Left to cherish his memory is his wife of 55 years, Brenda Marie Simon; children, Scott and the late Shelley Simon, Audra (Michael) Foster and Jarod (Michaela) Simon; eight grandchildren; and his siblings, Brenda (Terry), Sharon (Johnny), Danny (Robin) and Allen (Peggy).

Funeral service will be held at 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 24, 2022 at Haley McGinnis Funeral Home & Crematory. Visitation will be from 12 p.m. until time of service on Sunday, April 24, 2022 at the funeral home. At the request of the family, a mask will be mandatory.

Donations can be made to Disabled American Veterans, PO Box 14301, Cincinnati, OH 45250-0301. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.

Haley McGinnis Funeral Home & Crematory is both honored and privileged to be entrusted with the care of Mr. Simon. Leave your messages of condolences to the family of Jerry Simon and sign his virtual guestbook on www.haleymcginnis.com.

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