Frank Simmons, Jr. ’40

Frank Simmons, Jr. ’40 died June 5 at his residence in Corinth, Miss. He was born Feb. 7, 1919, in Mobile, Ala., the only child of Frank Simmons, Sr. and Alice Donavan Simmons. He completed his B.S. in economics at Davidson and his master’s in economics at the University of Virginia in 1941. He was a lifelong Presbyterian. Simmons was employed by the Newport News Shipbuilding Co. as an instructor of economics in 1941 and served as managing editor of the company’s magazine, The Shipyard Bulletin. Joining the U.S. Navy in 1944 as ensign in the supply corps, he trained at Harvard Business School before serving in the Pacific Theatre of WWII. He served the City of Corinth as a member of the Corinth School Board of Trustees for 18 years, a city alderman for 11 years, president of the City Cemetery Association for 30 years, and two terms as a director of the Corinth Chamber of Commerce. He was a charter member of the Mississippi Economic Council serving two terms as a director on the state board, and served as a colonel under two governors, J.P. Coleman and John Bell Williams. Along with Mrs. Fayette C. Williams and O.T. Holder, Jr., Simmons cofounded the Jacinto Foundation for the preservation and restoration of the Jacinto Courthouse and was the last surviving member of the original founders. He was a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. An astute businessman and entrepreneur, he managed rental properties, and for many years operated the Pickwick, the Coliseum, and the Skylark Drive-In Theatres. He opened the first coin-operated laundromat, U-Wash-It, in Corinth in 1958, and the town’s first franchised restaurant, Loeb’s Bar-B-Que, in 1965. His lifetime interests included swimming, world history, English literature, and the game of tennis, which he played until the age of 85. He was preceded in death by his wife of 65 years, Shirley Liddon McCullar Simmons. Survivors include his three sons, Rodney F. Simmons, Alan M. Simmons (Janet), and Steven L. Simmons (Monica), 810 Jackson St., FL OH, Corinth, MS 38834-4718; seven grandchildren, Sheperd and Tera Simmons, Shelly and Les Archie, Salem Peterson, Shannon Simmons and Michael Burns, Sean and Lindsay Simmons, and Alana Simmons and Catherine Simmons; and nine great-grandchildren.