Please add details about family members who have passed since our July 2018 family reunion in Las Vegas below.  You may also email simmsfamreunion@gmail.com as well and we will add. 

 


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E. Laverta Allen

November 23rd, 1926 - September 17th, 2021

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Laverta was the youngest of three daughters born to the union of Allee Allen and Erma Simms Allen. She accepted Christ at an early age and remained a devoted servant throughout her life. She was a member of New Mt. Olive Baptist Church in Ft. Lauderdale and Victory for the World Church in Stone Mountain, GA.  LaVerta along with her husband William "Bill"  Allen moved to Ft. Lauderdale in 1955 and  opened Bop record Shop. Five years after Bill's death she sold the business. Using her retail experience she began a career as an Avon Salesperson and successfully advanced to Manager. A proven entrepreneur, she established "Especially for You Ladies Clothing" and sold exclusive fashions to a loyal clientele in Broward County. She was also employed by the Broward County School District for many years.until retiring.. She moved to Atlanta, GA in 1998 and spent more than two decades building new memories with family and friends. In March 2020 she returned to Florida and settled in Lauderhill in the care of her daughter Karen aka "KK". Volunteering in her community and spending time with family and close friends were woven into the fabric of LaVerta's life. She was a member of the KeenAges retirement group, an avid bowler, loved card games and traveling to places around the world with friends and/or family.  LaVerta is survived by her seven children, an adopted stepson, ten grandchildren, twelve great-grandchildren and a host of extended family members and friends.

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St. Clair Booker

February 4th, 1927 - April 5th, 2021

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st. Clair was the second child born to the union of St. Clair and Idonia Booker. He attended Copernicus Elementary and Lindbloom and Dunbar High School. He was drafted into the US Army before finishing High school. Through his sister Marie, he met and eventually married the love of his life, Audrey Cloyd. They shared many wonderful experiences together and loved to travel with friends and family.  He was an avid Jazz loverr and had an extensive Jazz collection.  He worked at Dial Chemical for several years before starting a Limousine service with a friend. Later he was employed by Union Carbide and ended up at National Tea Co. as the 1st black Urban Exec.  In 1966 he joined SCLC Rainbow Push Coalition. He began as a volunter and served in many areas there. St. Clair and Rev. Jackson began a father/son relationship and they traveled the world together for over 20 years. He joined Fellowship Baptist Church and served in many capacities there. In later years he joined Centennial MBC and attended faithfully until his wife's health began to decline.  St. Clair leaves to cherish his memory a Sister, a Brother, three In-laws, eight Nieces and a host of other relatives and friends

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Marguerite Brown (Ellison)

March 7th, 1950 - April 2nd, 2020

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Marguerite Lenore Brown, (Margie) was the third child of Erven and Doris Ellison. She was born in Chicago and was preceded in death by both parents.She attended Englewood High School where at the age of 16, she met the love ofher life, Walter Roger Brown. They dated throughout high school and four years of college. After graduating from college, Roger was drafted by the NBA and they were married on November 18, 1971. On July 7, 1975, Margie gave birth to her only child, Donise Evonne Brown. Margie had a natural penchant for baking and cooking. Margie was a member of Shiloh Baptist Church for ovr 40 years and sang in the choir for many years. Margie became a grandmother on September 1, 1999 when her daughter gave birth to Jazmyn Kameron Carthen. Margie leaves to mourn her memory,her husband of 49 years, her daughter Donise, granddaughter Jazmyn, sister, Ervette, brothers Erven Jr. and Robert; a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and caring friends. She will be greatly missed by all.

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Eric Kenneth Burrell

October 9th, 1959 - July 9th, 2021

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Eric Kenneth was the second son born to the union of Lonnie E. and Marie A. Burrell. He attended Henry Horner, Hinton and Westscott Elementary and Parker High School graduating at the age of sixteen. He attended Southern Illinois University where his older was attending. In the summer of 1975, he went home on summer break and began working at Ball Metal as a sheet metal decorator. After many yearsthere, he joined the staff of Hart Schaffnern& Marx. Later he was employed with Continental United Airlines for 28 years  working in various areas.  Eric was baptized at Grace Apostolic Faith Church. after being healed from throat cancer in 2017, Eric confessed Christ as his personal Savior. he was an outstanding chess player during his high school days and was a master Monopoly player. Eric and friend Denise were professional steppers.  Eric had a love for cars and as a little boy would cut pictures from magazines of Cadillacs, Mercedes Benz and Jaguar.  Luxury was just his thing learning from his father.  He leaves to cherish his memory his daughter Erica Marie (Omarr), two grandsons, three granddaughters, two brothers, three sisters, three uncles, two aunts, his loving companion, Denise of thirty years, and a host of other family and friends.

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Marie Burrell (Booker)

June 29th, 1932 - July 24th, 2018

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In Loving Memory:
   Marie Antoinette Burrell was born on June 29, 1932 in Chicago, Illinois. She was the fifth child born to the union of Saint Clair and Idonia Booker. Her parents, along with her sister Alice LaVergne and her brothers Ira Carl and Paul Verdane, proceeded her in death.
   Marie was affectionately known to her parents and close friends as “Pita Ree”. She received her education at Copernicus Elementary and Lindbloom High School. For 81 years, she was a lifelong sister and friend to Gwendolyn Glen.
   Marie was employed for over 44 years of her life at the following companies: Allied Electronics, World Book Encyclopedia as a top salesperson and Ryerson Steel where she retired in 1994. She returned to work as an assistant at Liz’s Quality Daycare.
   Marie received the Holy Ghost in October 1979 after announcing to her daughter Kathy “I am going to noon day prayer to get the Holy Ghost”.  Over her life, Marie has been a member of several Apostolic Faith churches where she served the Lord in many ministries as a very dedicated member to her faith. The joy of her life was her children, grandchildren and of course, those great grands.
   She leaves to remember her life of love, her children: Dwayne, Eric (Denise), Kathy and five grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, two brothers, one sister and a host of precious relatives and friends.

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Doris Ellison (Wills)

March 29th, 1928 - December 21st, 2018

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Life Journey of:
Doris J. Ellison who was born in Middletown, Ohio on March 29, 1928. She married the love of her life, Erven E. Ellison, SR who preceded her in death. There were four children born to this union, the twins Erven Jr. and Ervette, Marguerite better known as Margie and Robert. Doris was a member of Shiloh Baptist Church for over 75 years, working in many ministries. She and her husband traveled extensively during their marriage.  Doris was called home by her Heavenly Father on December 21, 2018.

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Cynthia Ann Hicks (Jefferson)

October 24th, 1957 - January 22nd, 2021

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Cynthia was the second child born to Warner Jefferson and Ella Marie Adamorem Jefferson. She grew up in a home with plenty of love, a lot of laughter and the teaching of GOD's Divine Word.  As a child you could always find her in a skating rink, reading a book, crocheting, working in puzzle books, and indulging in good soul food. Her education included Argo and Fort Dearborn Elementary and Lindblom Technical High School. She received a bachelor's degree in Microbiology from Talladega College. Her love for edcation led her to earn multiple certfications in the medical field. She was baptized as a child at Antioch Baptist church in Argo, IL, and later joined Shiloah Missionary Baptist Church in Chicago and became a member of the Young Adult Women Ministry. Later she became an active member of Total Christian Women Involvement, Inc. and served and ministered to others. Later she joined Lighthouse Church of All Nations and ministered in the choir and the Free Indeed Ministry a prision sftercare program. Her greatest experience in her christian walk was her trip toJerusalem. Cynthia's employment included four different Hospitals and being substitute teacher for Chicago Public Schools. She leaves to cherish her memory her Mom, eight Siblings, Aunts, Uncles, Nieces, Nephews  and a host of cousins and friends that felt like family

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Bernice Jones (Toliver)

September 17th, 1922 - January 24th, 2021

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Bernice was born in Bradenton Florida. She attended Bethune Cookman College where she became a member of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.  After nursing school, Bernice became a nurse for the Veterans Administration in Brentwood California where she aorked until her retirement in the late 1970s.  She was a member of 1st African Methodist Episcopal Church (FAME) in Los Angeles California where se served as an Usher and a Steward. She also served as an officer with the League of Women Voters. Bernice was a dynamic caring person who cherished life and interacting with people all over the globe. She loved traveling to Europe, Israel, and the Far East. As a member of the Kennedy Center she relished attending the opera, stage plays and the symphony.  Bernice is survived by her husband Gilbert E. Jones and numerous family friends and admirers throughtout the world.

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Lynette Lewis

October 13th, 1957 - July 12th, 2019

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Lynette was the life partner of Robert Ellison for 38 years, the youngest son of Ervin & doris ellison. She was an artistic soul. She was a born artist, and saw the beauty in all things. Her artistic abilities were not limited to painting, she was an avid clothing designer and seamstress. She created home decor art pieces; her home was truly a work of art. She is especially missed by Robert.  May her spirit be reunited with her parents who preceeded her in death.

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Geraldine Mattie Martin (Adamore)

October 25th, 1933 - November 1st, 2020

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Geraldine was the oldest child born to William and Geraldine Adamore. She was lovingly known as Little Geri, geri and The Fox. Geraldine accepted Christ at a young age. She joined the church her Great grandfather helped build, Mt. Carmel CME where she was baptized.  As an adult she joined several other churches, Shiloah Baptist Church, Hillcrest Baptist Church where she served on the Usher Board, and lastly Oakdale Covenant Church.  She attended Doolittle Elementary and Dunbar High School.  She married Robert Lee Fountain Sr. Three sons were born to this union, Stephen, Robert Lee Jr. and John Wesley. She later remarried Alonzo Martin who adopted her three sons. After 20 years of working as a Unit Secretary she retired from Lutheran General Hospital. Geraldine enjoyed modeling glamorous hair styles and scting locally. She was a fashion guru known for her head to toe look.  She enjoyed extensive travelling to experience what the world had to offer. She leaves to cherish her memory her three sons and daughter-inlaw Lois, seven grandchildren, twenty-one Great grandchildren, a Daughter/Niece and a host of family and friends.

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Ella Marie Orange (Adamore)

June 9th, 1938 - February 2nd, 2021

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Ella Marie  was the fourth child born to the union of William and Geraldine Adamore. She accepted Christ as a young child and was baptized at Mt. carmel CME Church. While in High school she was swept off her feet by warne B. Jefferson and she married him.  From that union five children were born; Sheila, Cynthia, Marcus, Donna and Tina.  Ella attended Copernicus Elementary and Dunbar High School.  She began a career in the health field and earned her Licensed Practical Nurse certification in the Chicago Public School system. She continued studying nursing at Kennedy King College and received her Nursing Degree.  She furthered her higher education by obtaining a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health Art and a Master of Science Degree in Health Service Administration from St. Francis University. She studied at Trinity Christian Bible Institute and obtained her Certificate of Biblical Studies.  Ella joined Shiloah Missionary Babtist Church and served on the Nurses and Trustees Board. She joined a ministry of helps, Total Christian Women Involvement Inc. where she served in various capacities.  Ella had a significant work history in the medical field.  Ella later married Rev. William Orange and this blessed union added four more children. She later joined Bethlem Temple Baptist Church where she was Founder and President of the Health Ministry.  Ella leaves to cherish her memory her blended family of nine children, her grandchildren, 31 great-grandchildren and a host of other family members and friends.

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Melvin Piper

June 4th, 1926 - June 1st, 2019

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Melvin Jerome Piper, Sr. first greeted the world on June 4, 1926 in Detroit, Michigan. He was the youngest of the three sons born to Lionel H. Piper, Sr. and Marguerite (Simms) Piper. The family moved to the Englewood neighborhood in Chicago, Illinois, where they joined the rest of the Simms Family. This gave him the opportunity to be raised with all of his cousins, especially, his cousin/brother, Robert “Rabbit” McCommon. Melvin and Nedra had a blended family of his, mine and ours. After serving in the war, he married Clara Johnson. Years later he met Nedra L. (Wilson) Dargans and they were married for 54 years. He was employed by the U.S. Postal Service for over 40 years. He and Nedra were avid travelers along with his cousins. After retirement he got a job working at a pawn shop, and he loved it. His family was his heart, he loved spending time with them especially playing the family game of “Bonanza Rummy”. Melvin was an avid reader of novels and keeping abreast of current events. He also loved to ride motor-cycles in his younger years. On June 1, 2019 the Good Lord called Melvin home and he left behind his wife, three children, four grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

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Wardell Hemmings Piper

September 21st, 1968 - November 2nd, 2021

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Wardell Hemmings was the oldest of four sons born to the union of Wardell M. Piper and Patricia A. James in Chicago. He came to know the Lord and was baptized at Apostolic Faith Church.  After the divorce of his parents, his mother and her children relocated to San Diego, CA.  Wardell attended Woodrow Wilson Middle School and Herbert Hoover High School. He went to Mesa Cummunity College and received a two year certificate.after which he became gainfully employed.  He was a loner by nature and a great conversationalist who would talk to anyone about anything.  Wardell was a unique, extraordinary, dignified young man who loved the Lord.  He leaves to cherish his memory His Parents, His Brothers; Joseph, Christopher and Charles, His Nephews, Nieces, Cousins and other family and friends.

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Melvin Piper, Jr.

May 29th, 1957 - May 3rd, 2020

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Melvin Jr. (Mel) was born to the union of Melvin J. Piper, Sr. and Claire Piper in chicago, IL. He attended Elementary and High School in Chicago. He leaves to chrish his memories, his sister Barbara Green, his brother Liionel Piper, his daughter Marguerite, his nephews Philip and John Green, many great nieces and nephews and a host of cousins and friends. He has joined his father who preceded him in death.

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Deborah Porter (Piper)

August 30th, 1947 - November 15th, 2021

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Deborah was the second oldest of three children born to the union of Wardell and Sandra Piper in Hamtramck, MI.  She graduated from Parker High School in Chicago and made her journey through life in the professional administrative field and moving on to a fulfilling career in the healthcare industry. It was there where she took great pride and unparalleled passion for caring for others including those in her family.  Deborah met the love of her life, Robert Porter and they married in 1989.  One son, Anthony was born to that union.  She accepted Christ at a very early age and was a proud active member at Bethel A.M.E. Church.  She loved her church family and demonstrated her love, devotion, dedication and spirit of cooperation to them.  She was a kind gentle soul always giving to those in need  Her wisdom and caring ways nurtured any heart that needed mending and tackled any life situation you could throw her way.  Amazingly her careers were secondary; bright, witty and supportive, everyone knew they could count on her.  Deborah carved out time to pursue her passions of music, live concerts, movies, travel, teaching Sunday school, reading and loving her family and friends.  Her memories will be cherished by her beloved son, two siblings Wardell and Diane, one sister in-law and brother in-law, five grandchildren, five great-grandchildren and a host of nephews, cousins and  other family and cherished friends.

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James Arnold Queen

October 17th, 1955 - February 24th, 2022

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James Arnold {known as Arnold} was the oldest child born to the union of Joseph James and Rose Marie Queen.He was a member of Holy Family Catholic Curch as well as attending St. John's Catholic Church. Arnold graduated from Largo Senior High School in 1974. He met and married Gail Robinson in 1981. Two sons, Marcus and Ryan were born to that union.  Arnold worked for the Federal Elections Commission for 39 years. He also worked with his cousins landscaping business. Out of that relationship Arnold and Gail found lasting friendship with the fellow workers and they began hosting football parties, weekly bowling and other activities. He was an avid sportsman. He loved the outdoors such as fishing excursions with friends, hunting with family and reminiscing about his time as an Eagle Scout. He was also a notable athlete.during and after his high school years. Arnold loved helping people and anyone who him could truly say he was a kind and caring person. If you needed him he would be there for you.
He leaves to cherish his memory, his Wife of 40 years, Sons and Wives, three Granddaughters, Mother, four Siblings, three Brothers-in-laws and wives and a host of other relatives and friends.

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Elnathan Ross (Allen)

May 29th, 1941 - January 29th, 2021

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Elnathan Allen Ross, AKA "Allen" of Lake Worth, FL was born in Chicago, IL to Christopher Elnathan Ross and Mildred (Allen) Ross.  He was te eldest of six children. He played the Alto Saxophone in the family band, "The Instrumentals". The band mainly played at churches all over Chicago and many surrounfing states during the 60's. He attended Woodrow Wilson Community College until he was drafted in 1963 into the army during the Vietnam Conflict. After his military duty He moved back to Detroit where He married Franziska Frizell and had a daughter name Tammy. His work experience included as a telephone linesman, a postal carrier, a security officer and shift supervisor. He attended the University of Michigan Fire Academy and received his Certification as a Fire Inspector. He moved to Atlanta, GA  and worked for their Fire Department as a Fire Safety Specialist. He had many interests; arts, crafts, surfing, bike riding, a car enthusiast, learning to fly a singile engine airplane at the age of 40. a fond memory was becoming an Honorary Chapter Member of the Tuskegee Airmen and flew as a crewman on a B7 Flight. Another great experience was when He drove an Indy Race Race Car on the Indy speedway at 100 mph for four laps. He also did somedeep-sea diving where he interacted with sharks.  He is survived by his daughter, Tammy, grandchildren, brother Neal, great-granddaughter, Sanina, nieces, nephews and many other desr relatives and friends who survive.             

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Sean Shelton

August 28th, 1964 - May 13th, 2021

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Sean was born in Detroit, MI to mother Janice O. Shelton and father, Wardell Piper, Sr.  He was educated in the Hamtramck Catholic School System from K-12 receiving many honors and certificates. He also played most sports his live being basketball.  Due to his skills, size and especially his height, hee was published weekly in Hamtramck newspapers. He enrolled in Indiana College furthering his education and sports career. He was watched by many scouts during those years. He was out due to a knee injury for a period of time but returned with a vengeance because he loved the game.  He played in Yugoslavia after being referred and recommended by his manager/coach. He returned to the U.S after the wars broke out and continued his career.  His knee injury caused him to retire after a great run on the court.  He was later employed by Karmanos Cancer Institute, Comerica bank and finally Chrysler Corp. for 34 years. He was a third generation from birth attending Jones Temple, COGIC.  Sean leaves to cherish his memories, brother Wardell Piper, Jr.; sisters Deborah Porter, Diane Ivy, Stella Means and a host of Aunts, Cousins, family and friends.

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