Bruce Simon, 74 of Springfield, peacefully passed away surrounded by loved ones on Monday, October 23, 2023, at Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, IL. He was born December 9, 1948, in Chicago, IL, the son of Fred and Nancy (Fell) Simon. He married the love of his life, Marguerite Feeley, on July 25, 1987, and she survives.
He is also survived by his three children, Eileen (Patrick) Besler, Mary Kate and Michael Simon; two grandchildren, Peter Patrick and William Bruce Besler; two sisters, Leslie (Bob) Zimmerman of River Forest, IL and Mary (Mike) Groves of Tempe, AZ; four brothers, Dave (Karen) Simon of Miller Beach, IN, Gerry (Donna) Simon of La Grange, IL, Mike Simon of Westmont, IL, and Danny (Alison) Simon of Hobart, IN; Aunt Fran Fell; numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and Feeley brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law. Preceding him in death are his parents; two brothers, Ed and Bobby Simon; nephew, Tom Zimmerman; and Marguerite’s parents, Jim and Mary Beth Feeley.
Bruce was devoted to his family. He reveled in their activities and accomplishments. Bruce cherished all family time including going to the movies, all Grampy duties and family vacations to Disney World, Coronado, Michigan and Ireland.
Bruce spent his younger years in Gary, IN. He attended Indiana State University where he earned his bachelor’s in political science and was student body president. Bruce was a United States Army Veteran serving as a medic and drug counselor during the Vietnam War. Following his service, he worked for Indiana US Senator Vance Hartke.
Bruce worked as a legislative liaison at a variety of state agencies delivering human services. After leaving state government, he had a successful 25 plus year career as a lobbyist primarily representing clients in healthcare related fields. He was a co-founder of The Association of Safety Net Community Hospitals in Illinois and helped to establish the Medicaid data warehouse. Bruce was highly respected in the state legislature and state agencies and was the recipient of many awards for outstanding public service to people in need.
Bruce worked on many key pieces of legislation. As a lifelong White Sox fan, he was particularly proud of his work to help pass the 1988 bill to keep the Sox in Chicago. Bruce would say his finest lobbying effort was securing the 2005 White Sox World Series trophy at his home. He was a proud founding member of the bipartisan White Sox Caucus in Springfield. Bruce was also involved in community programs including serving as a member of the Springfield Public School Foundation. Bruce was a selfless, thoughtful, and compassionate man. He will be dearly missed by many.
Memorial Gathering and Celebration of Life: 6:00 – 7:00 pm, Friday, November 3, 2023, at Illini Country Club. A Celebration of Life will begin at 7:00 pm.
Memorial Mass: 10:30 am, Saturday, November 4, 2023, at Blessed Sacrament Church, hosted by the family, with Rev. Jeffery Grant officiating. A private burial will take place at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Springfield MERCY Communities, www.mercycommunities.org.
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