Richard Martin Simons passed away peacefully on November 17, 2022. Richard was born on October 19, 1944, in Salt Lake City Utah to Fred Martin Simons and Donna Jeanette Haycock. He was the second of six children. He spent the majority of his growing up years in Utah.
Richard was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He had the opportunity to be one of the original missionaries who opened the Italian Mission. This turned out to be one of the most important decisions he made in his life because it was through one of these 16 missionaries he was introduced to his future wife. On June 6, 1968, he married the love of his life Colleen Olsen in the Salt Lake City Temple. They spent the next 54 years rarely apart. When Richard was drafted for the Vietnam War Colleen got a job at the judge advocate general’s office and moved to Thailand with her new husband.
Richard loved life and helping people. He pursued his education at Weber State and The University of Utah where he received multiple Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. He worked as a Psychologist and a Social Worker and was always more focused on helping the individual than anything else. He ran the Salt Lake County Detox, the Vietnam Veteran Outreach Hospitals for Utah and Idaho, and the Vietnam Readjustment Counseling Center. Dad loved helping vets and trying to help them function in society. Even though he had not been a veteran by choice he had a deep love for this country and the people who serve it. One of the ways that dad had a great impact on his community was through the Drug Court program. Richard spent time creating and helping many people that were processed through and completed Drug Court. There was nothing more important to our dad than helping people who felt they had nowhere else to go.
Our dad enjoyed traveling all over the world and made it a point to appreciate any place he could relax and read a book. He always had 2 things with him: a book and a knife for carving. He would often be asked by people if they could have one of his many hand carved walking sticks. He took this woodworking talent and volunteered with all his neighborhood friends at Tiny Tim’s toy factory making wooden cars for needy children all throughout the world.
As much as dad enjoyed these things his greatest love was his family. He attended every one of our sporting events, plays. dance and piano recitals and loved going to all his grandkid’s events even more. All the grandkid’s teammates knew Richard and Colleen because they were always on the sidelines supporting the team.
Richard was preceded in death by his eternal companion (Colleen), his son (Marc), his parents (Fred and Donna), his brother (Butch) his brother In-laws (Paul Foote and Doug Olsen) and numerous other loved ones. He is survived by his children Darren (Kristin) Simons, daughter Cynthia (Soni) Vaka. He is survived by his siblings, in-laws, nieces, nephews as well as his 8 grandkids and 1 great grandchild.
A viewing will be held Monday night from 6:30-8:30 at the LDS meetinghouse at 5200 S Glendon St, Murray, UT 84123 as well as Tuesday morning prior to the services from 9:30am-10:45am. The services will take place at 11:00am at the LDS meeting house at 5200 S Glendon St, Murray Utah. His interment will follow at the Memorial Estate Cemetery on 6500 S Redwood Road, West Jordan UT 84123
In lieu of flowers please make donations to Tiny Tim’s Toy Factory, West Jordan, UT.Service Information
Viewing November 28, 2022 at 6-8 PM
5200 S. Glendon St.
Viewing November 29, 2022 at 9:30-10:45
5200 South Glendon Street
November 29, 2022 at 11:00 AM
5200 S. Glendon Street