Eugene Richard "Gene" Simmons, age 92, of Pine Bluff, died Monday, July 1, 2013.

Eugene Richard “Gene” Simmons, age 92, of Pine Bluff, died Monday, July 1, 2013.

He was born October 14, 1920 in Pine Bluff, a son of the late James Emmett Simmons and Dulcie Crossett Vaught. He was a member of First Baptist Church.

He served with the Seabees during World War II, in the South Pacific helping to build airplane landing strips. Mr. Simmons was also a Purple Heart recipient.

He was a graduate of Southern Methodist University, receiving a degree in Civil Engineering. After college, he went to work for the Cotton Belt Railway in Tyler, Texas. He later moved to Pine Bluff. He was a divisional engineer for the Southern Pacific Railway in San Francisco. Prior to his retirement, he transferred back to Pine Bluff.

Once retired, he continued his engineering work, and oversaw the relocation of the Cotton Belt tracks from West 3rd to 4th Avenue. After the relocation, he went to work for the United States Government mapping tracks thru Louisiana, Texas, Southern Illinois, and Arkansas for the route missile tracks would take if ever needed.

He loved to golf, fish, hunt, and last, but not least, horse racing at Oaklawn. He and his wife traveled through most of the United States, a number of Mediterranean countries, as well as some of the islands in the Caribbean.

He worked hard, played hard, and will be deeply missed. Preceding in death are his wife of 71 years, Martha Sue Rugg Simmons; a sister, Rita Rowe; and a brother, G.G. Simmons.

Survivors include a son, Van Simmons; a grandson, Randall Anthony Simmons; and a great-granddaughter, Sabrina Simmons.

Memorial services will be Monday, 2:00 p.m. at Fuller Hale-South Funeral Chapel with the Rev. Pam Estes officiating. Interment will be private. The family will greet friends Monday from 1:00 p.m. until service time.

Memorials may be made to Lakeside United Methodist Church, 1500 S. Olive Street, Pine Bluff, AR 71601. Online condolences: