Rickey Wayne Simmons, 72, of Winston Salem, NC, passed away peacefully at his home on Friday, October 23, 2020. Born in Winston Salem on February 27, 1948, he was a lifelong resident of Winston Salem, living in the home where he was raised after lovingly restoring it as an adult.
Rickey was an extraordinary human being across the many facets of his life. He was a passionate football player at East Forsyth High School and enjoyed watching the sport as a fan after high school. In 1967, he began his professional career in aviation with Piedmont Airlines. He trained for emergency aircraft fires and shared his skills by joining and retiring from Union Cross Fire Department as a volunteer fireman. In 2019, he was awarded the Charles Taylor Master Mechanic Award by the Department of Transportation Federal Aviation Administration. The award is presented to the select few that achieve 50 years or more of aviation service, furthering aviation safety.
He was a farmer at heart, teaching his granddaughter, Emery Polk, to drive tractors and grow a bountiful garden. Sharing his garden with others gave him great satisfaction. What brought him the most joy was spending time with his family and friends and taking long walks with his dog, Bell.
He was an exceptional human being with a gentle and generous soul, dedicating his life to benefitting his family, church, and the community. He was a very patient mentor and a wonderful role model for many. He was always gracious with his time and never hesitated to provide support and guidance to those in need. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, brother-in-law, son-in-law, uncle, cousin, and friend to many.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Earl Cranston and Frances (Rothrock) Simmons. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Teresa (Ball) Simmons; his devoted daughter and son-in-law, Wendy Simmons and Brian Polk; the joy of his life and precious granddaughter, Emery Simmons Polk; his sister and brother-in-law, Sylvia and Tommy Lohr; brother and partner, Larry Simmons and Susan Cannady; brother, Randy Simmons; and his nieces, nephews, cousins, and many extended friends and family that he cherished.
A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, October 28, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at Friedland Moravian Church Graveyard officiated by Pastor John G. Rights and Pastor Adam Goodrich.
In lieu of flowers, share love, gratitude, or encouragement with others to try to make up for his absence. His beautiful spirit will live on through your acts of kindness. If other options are desired, please consider donating to his beloved church, Friedland Moravian Church, 2750 Friedland Church Road, Winston Salem, NC, 27107. Online condolences may be sent to www.jcgreenandsons.com.
To send flowers to Rickey's family, please visit our floral store.