Harold Champion Simmons | Beaufort County Now | Harold Champion Simmons, PhD, went to be with his LORD GOD on Aug. 12, 2013, at the age of 95. He died in Ridgewood Manor Nursing Home in Washington.

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    Harold Champion Simmons, PhD, went to be with his LORD GOD on Aug. 12, 2013, at the age of 95. He died in Ridgewood Manor Nursing Home in Washington.

    His first wife, Agnes Effie Wilson, died of cancer in Houston, Texas on Jan. 19, 1993. Surviving that marriage are one stepson, John Styles, two stepdaughters, Sammie Barrett and Toni Lopez, six stepgrandchildren and one step-great-grandchild. Also surviving in his immediate family are two uncles, Ben and David Champion, four cousins, Robert and Donald Bueermann, Elaine Berguson and Diana White, along with a number of nieces and nephews.

    He married his second wife and friend since 1946, Beatrice Marie Seal Heald, on Sept. 13, 1997, in Washington. She died with Alzheimer's on Aug. 25, 2007.

    Harold was born in Brantford, Ontario, Canada, where his father, Robert Lindsay Simmons, was a banker and church organist. His father died of the flu in 1920. His mother, Una May Champion, brought him to live with her father in White Plains, NY, where he was a pastor of the First Baptist Church.

    He graduated from Pratt Institute with a B.F.A degree in 1940 and taught art for one year at Dundalk, MD. During the Second World War he went to OCS and spent two years in the South Pacific's Fifth Air Force. After being discharged, he taught art history for 21 years at New York University. During this time, he earned MA and PH.D degrees. Dr. Simmons went to Briarcliff College from 1967-1977 where he was Chair of the Fine Arts Department. In 1978, he went to Baylor where he became Chairman of the Fine Arts Department and directed the construction of a new Fine Arts Center. He retired in 1985 with his wife, Agnes, and moved to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, to open a travel agency. Agnes developed cancer, and they returned to Texas where she died in 1993.

    Harold moved to The Woodlands, Texas for four years; then, to Washington, N.C., where he married his second wife, Bea. Over the next few years they often visited Moscow, Russia, where they stayed with Artremas and Galya, making an extensive collection of nesting dolls and Christmas tree ornaments. Harold donated these and Bea's collections of cut glass and hurricane lamps to the Jefcoat Museum in Murfreesboro, N.C., where they are now on display.

    Dr. Simmons' other activities included church work, teaching adult classes in his later years. He was also active for many years in Scouting, receiving the Eagle Rank, Scouter's Award, and Silver Beaver Award. Hobbies included the arts, archaeology, music and model railroading. He did commercial art and photography professionally and published a book, "Archaeological Photography," and several magazine articles.

    Please send memorial donations in lieu of flowers to the First Presbyterian Church, 211 W, Second St., Washington, NC 27889. There will be no memorial service and his body was given to medical science.
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