Memorial services for Ray Simon were held Tuesday, November 21, 2017, at Family Life Church in Gillette, Wyoming, with Pastor Marty Crump officiating. Raymond Simon 87 passed away on Sunday, November 12, 2017, at Campbell County Memorial Hospital of natural causes.
Raymond Charles Simon was born on May 13, 1930, in Kalispell, Montana, to Mabel (Mingle) and Arthur Simon. In high school Ray worked odd jobs: “soda jerk”, grocery delivery and truck driving.
After graduating in 1948, he enlisted in the United States Navy. He served during the Korean Conflict and was honorably discharged in 1952.
He married Elaine Johnson September 2, 1954. He worked as an appliance repairman in Spokane, Washington then moved to Seattle to attend the University of Washington. Ray obtained his Bachelor of Science degree in 1957, his Master of Science degree in 1960 and his Doctorate in 1964. During this time they had three children, Ann, John and Greg.
The family moved to Corvallis, Oregon, in 1966, where Ray taught graduate level fish genetics while doing research for the Department of the Interior’s Fish and Wildlife Service. They then moved to Beulah, Wyoming, in 1973, where Ray became the Director of the Fish Genetics Lab at Ranch A.
In 1977, he was called to serve in Washington, D.C. After nine months, he was assigned to the National Fisheries Center in Leetown, West Virginia, as lead fish genetics researcher. He was granted the Meritorious Service Award from the Secretary of the Interior for introducing the research activity known as “immunogenetics”, to study genetic-based disease resistance in Lake Trout, Atlantic Salmon, and Striped Bass.
Ray and Elaine retired back to Beulah in 1991. Elaine passed away in 2002. After meeting the former Phyllis Geier, they were married July 19, 2003. They purchased a home in Sheridan, Wyoming, by the end of that year and were very active in the Blue Sky Saddle Club, their homeowners association, working for public access to Federal lands for hunting and fishing, and church.
After Phyllis passed away in January of 2013, Ray sold the Sheridan house and moved to Gillette in September of that year. In Gillette, Ray loved the Lord and was a member of Family Life Church, enjoying woodworking, leatherwork, fishing, the outdoors and family.
He was intelligent, kind, generous, and above all a loving individual who will be greatly missed by his family, and innumerable friends from all over the world. He is survived by his three children, Ann Barker of Upton, Wyoming, John Simon of Gillette and Greg Simon of Nashville, Tennessee; grandchildren, Mandy, Kristy, Kim, Matt, Jordan and Joshua; great-grandchildren, Samantha, Cammie, Dorean, Logan, JP and Claire; brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews and innumerable friends from all over the world.
In lieu of flowers the family request that memorials be made in Ray’s name to Family Life Church. Memorials and condolences may be sent in care of Gillette Memorial Chapel 210 West 5th Street, Gillette, WY 82716. Condolences may also be expressed at www.gillettememorialchapel.com