John ‘Jack’ Simermeyer, obituary

Thu, 12/02/2021 - 4:30pm

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minnesota — Jack Simermeyer, 93, passed away peacefully in his sleep on November 14, 2021 after a brief illness. Fortunately, his close family was able to be with him in his final days and hours.  

Jack was born in the Bronx and attended Fordham Prep, where he played football and ran cross-country. He later attended Fordham University and was a lifelong supporter of Fordham, interested in all the developments there.  He was also a lifelong Yankees fan, having attended games at the stadium with his family.  Other cherished memories included playing the bugle in the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade and spending summers in high school in college as a camp counselor in Vermont.

Jack was proud to have served his country in the Army as a Reserve Commissioned Officer, as a Major in the Transportation Corps. 

He later began his career in New Jersey, and worked for Marine Colloids in the seaweed industry, while earning an MBA from New York University.  

Jack married the love of his life, Elizabeth Tietjen, in 1960 and four years later they had their daughter Beth.  

Jack went on to work for Marine Colloids (later FMC) for 40 years, moving the family to the Rockland, Maine global headquarters and settling in Camden in 1972. He loved his work, serving in a variety of roles including VP of Finance and operations and treasurer.  In his roles Jack traveled the world in pursuit of seaweed and his friends in Denmark, Prince Edward Island, Chile and especially the Philippines were very important to him throughout his life.  

Always a man of great faith, and a devout Catholic throughout his life, Jack was also deeply dedicated to his family. He was a devoted son and brother, and then a loving husband, and father. But quite possibly his most cherished role was that of “Grandjack” to his three beloved grandchildren, Jack, Caroline and Liam, whom he was very proud of and with whom he always enjoyed spending time.  

Jack had a deep love of recreation, having run many races, and loved swimming, water skiing, boating and body surfing and cross-country skiing. He also had a keen interest in investments, having been certified as a Personal Investment Planner, and most of all he loved watching and discussing all sports. Jack and his wife loved to travel and were known to be fantastic dancers.  

Jack also believed in giving back to his community and was very active in his church in Camden, Our Lady of Good Hope, serving on the finance committee for many years, as well as the finance committee of the local hospital. In retirement, he was particularly passionate about organizing the water aerobics program at his condo and singing in the funeral choir at his church in Florida. Throughout his life he gave generously to charities which focus on helping children with cancer and homeless mothers, and particularly charities in the Philippines. 

Jack was a great storyteller and loved sharing his life experiences with others. Whether talking about his world travels, his deep knowledge of seaweed, his memories as a child of seeing the Hindenburg fly right over head while his family was fishing just before its destruction, his college memories of a summer traveling bathtub that was taken to all the parties on the shore to make batches of cocktails in, his negotiations with Ferdinand Marcos in order to do business in the Philippines or his many extended stays in very remote parts of the Philippines – his family and friends always enjoyed his retelling of his many decades of adventures.  

After Jack retired, he and his wife, Beth, enjoyed traveling, spending winters in Venice, Florida and summers in Camden, Maine on Lake Megunticook. When she suffered from Alzheimers, he took care of her with great tenderness until her death in 2009.

Jack spent his last five years living with his daughter and her family in Minnesota.

Jack’s strong work ethic, deep faith, kindness, sense of humor and passion for a variety of topics but most importantly his ability to connect with people, even or especially those quite different from him are qualities that are already greatly missed and that his family hopes to carry on.  

Jack was predeceased by his parents, Katherine (Keefe) and Arthur Simermeyer; his dear wife, Elizabeth (Tietjen) Simermeyer; his brother and sister-in-law, Art and Marie Simermeyer; and an infant daughter, Mary. 

He is survived by his beloved daughter Beth, and his dear grandchildren Jack, Caroline and Liam Simermeyer, all of Eden Prairie, Minnesota; as well as many close nieces and nephews, cousins and friends.

The family would like to thank Methodist Hospital and Little Hospice for excellent care in the final few weeks. 

A funeral mass is planned for January 13, 2022, at 10 a.m., at Epiphany Cathedral in Venice, Florida.

In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory to St. Jude Children’s Hospital or Our Mother’s House in Venice, Florida are suggested. 

Huber Funeral Home in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, assisted with the arrangements.