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Richard Simmers

Richard C. Simmers Jr.

Sunday, September 19th, 1943 - Monday, October 12th, 2020
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Obituary

On Monday, October 12, 2020 Richard C. Simmers Jr. D.O., son of the late Richard C. Simmers and Helen (nee Donaghue), loving husband, father, and grandfather, died at his home surrounded by family at age 77.
Dr. Richard Simmers was born in Philadelphia, PA, September 19, 1943 and raised in Flourtown, PA. After graduating from LaSalle University in 1965, he studied medicine at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine and graduated in June 1969. In 1966, he married the love of his life, Nancy Boland, during medical school and was the first intern class at Kennedy Memorial in Stratford, NJ. Rich opened his private pediatric practice in South Jersey. Dr. Simmers would continue work at Kennedy Health System and Rowan University until he retired.
Dr. Simmers gave his time to Msgr. Michael Doyle’s (Camden’s Sacred Heart Parish) free medical clinic which served those without medical insurance. He was the recipient of the National Osteopathic Physician of the Year in 2000, and the winner of the March of Dimes - Born to Shine award for pediatrics in 2010.
Rich had a passion for gardening and was featured in a national horticulture magazine for his Hosta garden. His love for the Phillies was palpable! Family vacations to Phillies spring training in Clearwater were greatly looked forward to as well as regular season games at the ballpark. He loved the game and quizzed everyone on the players stats. Spending time in Ocean City, NJ with his family and helping all to find good parking was always a good start to summer weekends down the shore.
Rich loved his family and helped his children with their home repairs, painting and gardening. Coming home from work seeing piles of dirt in the driveway and unplanted trees was a given. He will be missed for his love, support, honest answers to life’s problems, his laughter and great sense of humor.
Dr. Richard Simmers is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Nancy Simmers (nee Boland) of Cherry Hill, NJ, brother Louis Simmers (Patricia) of Doylestown, PA, sister Mariagnes Anderson (Eric) of Inverass, FL, and Bette Boland McGaffin, sister-in-law of Philadelphia, PA. His children, Richard C. Simmers III (Colleen nee McVeigh), Suzanne Simmers (Jay Sanderson), and Dr. Donna Simmers-Dabinett. Grandsons Ryan Simmers, and Connor and Dean Dabinett as well as many nieces and nephews will remember him fondly.
A socially distant visitation will be held on Friday, October 16, 2020, 6:00 to 8:00 pm at Bradley Funeral Home, 601 Route 73 S, Marlton, NJ 08053. The funeral mass will be held at 11:00 am on Saturday, October 17, 2020 at St. Thomas More, 1439 Springdale Road, Cherry Hill, NJ 08003.
A celebration of Richard’s life will be planned after the pandemic.
IN LIEU OF FLOWERS PLEASE DONATE TO ST. JUDE CHILDREN'S RESEARCH HOSPITAL AT (www.stjude.org).
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Friday, October 16th, 2020 | 6:00pm - 8:00pm
    When
    Friday, October 16th, 2020 6:00pm - 8:00pm
    Location
    Bradley Funeral Home
    Address
    601 NJ-73 South
    Marlton, Evesham Twp., NJ 08053
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Saturday, October 17th, 2020 | 11:00am
    When
    Saturday, October 17th, 2020 11:00am
    Location
    St. Thomas More Church
    Address
    1439 Springdale Road
    Cherry Hill, NJ 08003
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

Condolences

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Private Condolence
LF

Laura Devine Fennell

Posted at 08:08pm
Dr Simmers has always been so highly regarded amongst my family. He cared for my siblings and I along with many cousins and in more recent years, my own children. For me, he had been the doctor that noticed the signs and symptoms which led to a childhood leukemia diagnosis in one of my cousins. Thankfully she survived and likely in part, due to his swift actions. He was also the doctor that we rushed to see when my younger brother lodged a red jaw breaker in his nostril. After a bit of struggle, Dr Simmers pried the jaw breaker from the nostril and then jokingly held it out and asked my brother if he'd like to eat it...we all laughed. When I became a Mother in 2013, I was living about an hour away from the Sewell office in Mt Airy/Phila. Even so, I made those trips to see Dr Simmers. I knew that I could always rely on his knowledge and expertise. I knew that he would always be forthright and do for my children as he would've done for his own. I've always enjoyed visiting with him, sharing stories with him, and in turn gaining knowledge. I am grateful to have known him and his great care. I offer my heartfelt condolences to the family. You are in my prayers and I hope that the memories of him see you through. God bless you.

-Laura Devine Fennell
EH

Eileen Hillis

Posted at 03:22pm
Sending my deepest sympathies to the Simmers family for the loss of their loved one. I first met Dr Simmers when he was an intern at Kennedy Hospital and then had the privilege of working with him in the Pediatric unit of Kennedy Hospital for many years. He was the most caring ,loving and compassionate physician. He knew how to calm a frightened child , the parents and nurses.He always had time to answer questions and teach no matter how busy he was. I will always remember his smile and his jokes. He will be remembered forever. May he Rest In Peace
Eileen Hillis RN
DS

Donna Simmers

Posted at 11:57am
Sharing for my fathers friend Joe Devine
Dear Nancy & The Simmers Family,
I wanted to express my sincere sympathies and prayers for you during this challenging time due to the passing of your loved one and my friend for many years, Dr. Rich Simmers. He was someone who left a lasting impression on me from the minute I meet him. His work ethic, loyalty, genuine caring for everyone, integrity and sense of humor was evident whenever you were with him. He was a great physician who most importantly was a truly outstanding gentleman.
He obviously had a positive impact on so many people’s lives both on his patients, their parents and even when his patients became adults. Just think of how many of his patients eventually brought their kids and grandchildren to have him provide their care. And how many of those kids were upset when they were going to college and realized he would no longer be their physician due to them now being adults. My own daughters, Makenzie and Olivia were in that group for sure.
I loved everything about Rich it was always great just being around him. It always made my day. He also had a nice way to disagree with you and his approach so respectful that you did everything possible to see how you could do something to get to a favorable resolution. He also helped people who were not physicians to understand clinical issues in an easy way whether you were a parent or a hospital administrator (Like me).
I do know he was a great family man. He loved his family and spoke about you constantly. He was very proud of each of his children and loved his grandchildren. He loved to talk about what each of you were doing with your lives whether it was academics, sports, technology, etc. I know he was very pleased that Donna followed in his footsteps for a career in medicine. He often joked that she made the right specialty choice because she would not work all those crazy hours of a pediatrician. And Nancy you were his rock without question.
My first opportunity to meet Dr. Simmers was when he was highly recommended to Dina and myself for our new born daughter as a pediatrician. Obviously, the word was out because the office was always packed. He made the visits informative and really knew how to keep first time parents’ very calm. I was amazed he would call you back in the middle of the night to follow up on an issue for your child. I am not sure he ever really slept. It was wonderful to have a pediatrician who provided so much peace and comfort to as parents. I always remember the little Koala Bear he had on his stethoscope to get the kids attention or distract them from the examination or the dreaded screams from needles. And of course tell the kids it was once one of the other doctors gave them the needle.

Over the years as my career evolved at Kennedy, I had a chance to work with Rich from a leadership perspective when he was the Chief of Pediatrics at Kennedy Washington Township. I remember our Medical Executive Committee meetings were at 2:30pm every first Thursday of the month. Rich made them all even though most time he was late; however, we always expected and respected why because his patients matter first and foremost and business issues could always wait for patients. And without question after each meeting it was right back to office for many more hours.
You could always rely on Rich for honest viewpoints and discussion on any topic. I am grateful for the wonderful support he provided to me for many years both professionally and personally. I was honored to call Rich Simmers my friend and am forever grateful for our friendship.
I know this is a difficult time for many reasons to provide a really proper send off for a man as wonderful as Rich Simmers. Please know that Dina, our two daughters and I are forever appreciative for all that he meant to our family over the years. He was a very special part of our family because if Dr. Simmers said it then it was what we were going to do.
My understanding is when the time is right there will be a celebration of his life and I would appreciate the chance to be invited to that celebration. I also would consider it an extreme honor to say a few words on behalf of the healthcare systems that he helped in many ways, if time permits when it is planned.
My thoughts and prayers are with you and my friend Richie Simmers. He left a legacy and impression on people that will last forever. I am sure he is in heaven now smoking one of his cigars, talking about baseball or some other sport, or many other topics which he loved to do.
God Bless us all for having Rich Simmers in our lives. He was truly one of the best!
Joe Devine

October 16, 2020
WM

Wendy Cook Mukalian

Posted at 10:48am
I have spent more than half my life looking up to my ““Papa Bear “. He was a wonderful mentor , always finding teachable moments . I was always amazed at his fund of knowledge and will continue to aspire to be like him as a pediatrician . He was a role model for me, not only professionally ,but personally as he showed me the importance of making time for family and friends in a busy life. He always had a story or a joke that taught a lesson . I still hear his voice in my head with his pearls of wisdom .
 
DS

Donna Simmers Posted at 10:36pm

🐻🐻❤️❤️
LP

Louis A Papa

Posted at 10:13am
My wife and I loved Ritch for the way he cared for our sick children over more than 20 years. You could call for a problem at 11 PM to ask a question and he would say bring "bring him over I'm in the office". you always hear "they don't make em like that anymore" but for Rich it was a certainly true.
He retired for a short time but continued to go to medical lectures which explains his extreme competence and dedication.
He was a great teacher which would be echoed by generation of students and house officers- but also by me since he was one of my first teachers when he was an intern and I was a medical student. He also taught my intern class when he examined sick children in the ER at any time -day or night.
When I needed pediatric help at our free medical clinic at Sacred Heart Church in Camden Rich was there regularly for years.
In our circle of old medical people we realize we lost one of the last "good guys".
Dr Lou Papa
 
DS

Donna Simmers Posted at 10:34pm

❤️❤️❤️❤️
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