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Michael Rocco Simione, aged 82, passed away peacefully in Las Cruces, New Mexico, Dec. 2, 2020, with his family by his side.
He was preceded in death by his father, Anthony, his mother, Carmela, his sister, JoAnn, his brother, Joseph (Angela) and his son, Anthony. He is survived by his wife of 55 wonderful years, Marilyn, his son, Andrew (Melissa), his daughter-in-law, Stephanie, his grandchildren, Ruby, Carmela, Orion, Zach and Izzy, as well as many extended family members and friends.
Mike was born in Providence, Rhode Island, and grew up in Staten Island, New York. He completed his bachelor’s degree in hotel and restaurant management and business administration at Denver University in Denver, Colorado. Shortly afterward, he moved to California to begin his career. It wasn’t too long after that, while on a work assignment, that he met his future wife, Marilyn.
Fast forward four years, and they were married and headed to Northfield, Minnesota, to begin their life together. There, Mike worked at St. Olaf College for 30 years. He was hired as the director of food services and in time promoted to director of auxiliary enterprises and purchasing. He was elected and served on the Northfield City Council and as mayor. Mike was extremely active in many roles at St. Dominic’s Catholic Church in Northfield. While all of this, and much more, was going on, his two sons were born and grew up there, as well.
After too many Minnesota winters and humid summers, Mike and Marilyn moved to Las Cruces. Although retirement was the stated goal of this move, anyone who knew Mike will understand that this was not who he was.
He continued to work with many organizations and people in his new community: the Vista program, Community of Hope, St. Albert the Great Newman Parish, the City of Las Cruces as director of nutrition for senior programs, and most recently as office manager and coordinator for Dona Ana County Senior Olympics.
Mike was a loving and devoted husband, loving father and grandfather and a friend and mentor to many people. His work was always his hobby, and his hobby was serving and helping others. Mike was a deeply spiritual man, and his faith guided his actions in all aspects of his life. Due to the current situation, a private interment will be held at St. Albert the Great Newman Parish. A celebration of life service will be held in the coming months. If desired, please donate to the charity of your choice in memory of Mike, rather than sending gifts.
Arrangements are with La Paz – Graham’s Funeral Home, 555 West Amador Ave., Las Cruces, N.M., 88005. To sign the online guest book, visit www.LaPaz-Grahams.com.