James Lewis Simmons Jr.

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, October 22, 2014

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Aug. 8, 1938 – Oct. 20, 2014

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NATCHEZ — Services for James Lewis “Jimmy” Simmons Jr., 76, of Natchez, who died Monday, Oct. 20, 2014, at his residence under the care of Deaconess Hospice and surrounded by family and friends who loved him dearly, will be at 2 p.m. today at Laird Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Dan Wynn officiating.

Burial will follow at Greenlawn Memorial Park Cemetery under the direction of Laird Funeral Home.

Visitation will be from noon until service time today at the funeral home.

Mr. Simmons was born Aug. 8, 1938, in Vicksburg, the son of James Lewis Simmons Sr. and Hallie Belle Price Simmons.

He was a 1957 graduate of Culkin Academy. He attended Hinds Junior College for two years before joining the U.S. Army. He proudly served his country for five years and returned home to Vicksburg where he managed the family business. In 1978, he bought the Natchez Steam Laundry, now Simmons Steam Cleaners, Laundry and Rental, and then moved to Natchez.

He married Sarah Gentry Simmons Aug. 24, 1981, his wife of 33 years. They made their life and home in Natchez.

They were the owners of Highland Health Club for 19 years. Because of Jimmy’s health, the club was sold to the what is now, Crosspoint Church.

Jimmy was a Baptist and became a member of the Calvary Baptist Church in Vicksburg at the young age of 13. He had a number of talents, but working hard every day was what he loved. He was an airplane pilot and a scuba diver. He enjoyed water skiing, skating, working out, socializing and loved to dancing.

Jimmy loved to see people smile. He had a kind heart.

Jimmy never met a stranger and he was always helping others. He touched the lives of everyone he met. Surely he will be missed dearly by those who knew him.

He was preceded in death by his parents and one brother, John David Simmons.

Survivors include his devoted wife; a loving daughter he reared as his own, Rhonda Gentry Binns; three sons, Jody, Keith and wife, Sherri, and Kevin Simmons; two grandsons, Jacob and Matthew Simmons, all of Natchez, and four siblings, Carolyn Douglas, Brenda Mann, Patricia Geiger and Charles Wayne, all of Vicksburg.

Pallbearers will be Wink Collins, Lonnell Conner, Marshall Fleming, Ben Hewitt, Paul Perrin and Scott Pintard.

Honorary pallbearers will be Aric Richter, Julius Murray, James Robertson, Buddy Ragland and all the employees of Jimmy Simmons.

The family thanks Deaconess Hospice, Misty, Jackie and Paige for their loving care.

Jimmy rescued a number of animals throughout his life, giving them a wonderful and caring home. He leaves behind a number of animals who loved him dearly and will miss him very much: Remmi, Gizmo, Baby Bear, Love Bud, Seattle and Razor.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society.

Online condolences may be sent to lairdfh.com.