Obituary Listings

Wallace Raymond Simmons
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Obituary for Wallace Raymond Simmons

Wallace Raymond Simmons, a longtime resident of Plainfield, IL passed away on May 20, 2018 in Signal Mountain, TN at the age of 96. He was born June 26, 1921 in Detroit, MI.

Wallace is survived by his children Beverly Ann (H. Douglas) Kutz of Hixson, TN and Wallace Randolph “Randy” (Nancy) Simmons of Newburgh, IN; grandchildren Jacob Aaron Simmons and Elizabeth (Dennis) Demaree; fond uncle to several nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his beloved wife of 62 years Ruth Simmons (nee Wheeler); parents June Putman Simmons Merritt and Walter Raymond Simmons; stepfather Elvis “Jack” Merritt; brother Paul Herbert Simmons; sister Carol Sue Hazelwood; stepbrother Jack Merritt.

Wallace was born and raised in Detroit, MI. During WWII, Wallace served in Company A 292nd Engineer Combat Battalion (Army), where he was involved in campaigns in the Rhineland and Central Europe. After the war, he met his future wife Ruth, attended the University of Michigan, and graduated with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1949.

Wallace and Ruth were married in the chapel of the Henry Ford Trade School on August 20, 1949, and started their married life in Illinois where he accepted a position with The Texas Company in Lockport.

He joined Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) in 1951. He earned a B.S. in Engineering Mathematics from the University of Michigan in 1951 and continued with postgraduate education at Illinois Institute of Technology, earning an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1954.

At ANL, his work focused on the development, design, and construction of nuclear components and facilities, and management and direction of programs and projects in support of the National Liquid Metal Fast Breeder Reactor Program. He especially enjoyed his work as Project Engineer for the design and construction of the Experimental Breeder Reactor II (EBR-II) secondary and steam systems, and maintained a lifelong interest in the EBR-II design. He retired in 1986 but continued to serve as a consultant for ANL until 2013.

Wallace was an extraordinary, intelligent, talented, and very kind man who loved his family and his engineering work. He was well loved by many and will be deeply missed.

The family is very grateful to the wonderful people at Alexian Health and Rehabilitation Center and Hospice of Chattanooga who cared for Wallace during the last few years.

Family and friends to gather Saturday, June 2nd for 9:30 AM visitation until time of funeral service 11:00 AM at Overman-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services 15219 S. Joliet Rd. Plainfield, IL 60544.

Interment will follow at Plainfield Township Cemetery.

For those wishing to leave a lasting tribute to Wallace’s memory, donations may be made to Hospice of Chattanooga, 4411 Oakwood Dr, Chattanooga, TN 37416, or Alexian Christmas Fund437 Alexian Way, Signal Mountain, TN 37377.

For more information, please call (815)436-9221.

To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Wallace Raymond Simmons, please visit our Tribute Store.

Previous Events





9:30 AM - 11:00 AM
Overman-Jones Funeral Home

15219 Joliet Rd.
Plainfield, IL 60544





11:00 AM
Overman-Jones Funeral Home

15219 Joliet Rd.
Plainfield, IL 60544

Cemetery Details


Plainfield Township Cemetery

15408 South Joliet Road
Plainfield, IL 60544

Memorial Contribution

Alexian Christmas Fund

437 Alexian Way
Signal Mountain, TN 37377

Hospice of Chattanooga

4411 Oakwood Drive
Chattanooga, TN 37416

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