East Moline, Illinois
Palma Lee "Pam" Simmons, 90, of East Moline, Illinois, passed away on Tuesday, December 16, 2014, at the John and Betty Charlier Hospice Center in Evansville, Indiana, due to complications from a subdural hematoma.
Services are 11:00 a.m. Monday, December 22, 2014, at Gospel Assembly Church, 2700 53rd Street, Moline, Illinois. Burial is in Rose Lawn Memorial Estates, Moline. Visitation is 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. Sunday at Trimble Funeral Home at Trimble Pointe, 701 12th Street, Moline.
The former Palma Lee Cook was born May 18, 1924, in Missouri, to the late Benjamin and Annie (Bodenschadt) Cook. She was the youngest of seven children, two brothers and four sisters, who all preceded her in death. After losing her mother at the age of nine, she eventually moved to the Quad Cities to live with her sister, Mabel Bruce and her husband, when she was a teenager and there she met and married Cletus "Jim" Simmons at the age of 18.
Even though she did not have a motherly influence for most of her life, she became the most loving mother and outstanding homemaker and her entire life was focused on taking care of her family. She often shared memories of the ‘depression", the sacrifices that Americans made at that time to help our country, and when her precious brother, Benjamin David, with whom she shared a sacred bond passed away on D-Day during the Normandy invasion of WWII, it left her with an even more intense sense of patriotism for the remainder of her life. She took great insult to anyone that did not take pride in our country and was not shy about mentioning that to them or anyone else.
In addition to being an amazing homemaker, she worked 3rd shift (to be home with her children during the day) at the Buddy L toy factory for 10 years until it relocated to Mexico. She was one of the original Moline Kmart employees where she worked for 28 years and received dozens of commendations for suggestions that bettered their organization, and then she worked as a ‘baker' for four schools in the East Moline School District for 10 years, before finally retiring at 80 - she was a very committed employee whatever the task.
Her heart was compassionate to anyone that needed assistance or was hungry. She was known for making her amazing cookies, breads, cakes, muffins, or buying their breakfast at McDonalds if they were standing by and appeared, in her mind, to need something to eat. Her heart was huge -she embodied the scripture to "love others" as a mission every day. She loved her weekly McDonalds family and considered them her special friends for years. She was funny, comical, witty, and loved to make others smile - and "tried" to tell jokes that were often hilarious because she couldn't seem to get them right. She loved to know she brightened someone's day.
She was faithful in attending church every time the doors were open and found great peace and encouragement in worship with her church family. She genuinely loved God and lived thankful to Him each day. Even in her last days she would awake singing a hymn and was a ‘bright spot' for others that visited or cared for her, singing the hymns she loved so much. She was our "heaven on earth" - and she will be missed everyday by her family and friends… but we will ‘see' her in so many things she said, the things she did, and the way she loved us all.
The family wishes to thank Jackie Smith for the friendship, love and laughter she brought to mom helping to care for her and being her ‘personal chauffeur" for many years.
She leaves behind to cherish her memory - a son, Jim (Barbara) of Oran, Missouri; daughters, Cleta Kaufman of Coal Valley; Beverly Simmons (Byron Sanders) of Mt. Vernon, Indiana; five grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and three great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Cletus; her brothers, Benjamin Cook and Roy Cook; her sisters, Beulah Hicks, Mary Thompson, Pauline Boyer, Mabel Bruce, and a grandson, Lance Simmons.
Visit Pam's personal tribute page at www.TrimbleFuneralHomes.com to share stories, condolences and pictures, send flowers, and light a free candle in her memory.