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Loreta Amelia Simons

Loreta Amelia

Memorial services are scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, March 21, at First Baptist Church for longtime Artesia resident Loreta Amelia Simons.

Simons, 85, passed into eternal life March 17, 2016, in Roswell with her daughter, Beverly, holding onto her hands. She was taken from this life after a hard-fought battle with Alzheimer’s disease but now is safely in the loving arms of her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, in the company of her friends and family that have gone on before her.

Interment will follow the services at Woodbine Cemetery.

No visitation is planned.

Rita was born April 28, 1930, in Wetumka, Okla., to Beulah Essie Idonia Brooks and Henry Lawrence “Blondy” Webb, who preceded her in death. She moved with her parents and her brother, Gayle Dee, from Wetumka to Artesia in 1946. Rita graduated from Artesia High School in 1948.

On Dec. 26, 1948, she married her high-school sweetheart, William Ernest “Buck”

Fleming, at First Baptist Church in Artesia. He preceded her in death April 10, 1984. On Feb. 11, 1995, she married John Simons Jr. in that same church, and Rita and John made their home in Artesia, where they lived for many years. John presently resides in Roswell.

Rita loved music and playing the piano, and was in a local band called The Over the Hill Gang a few years ago. She loved to sing; she could find the harmony in any song she heard, whether she knew it or not.

Music gave her joy and comfort all of her life, into the last hours of her life.

She loved to laugh and make her home and surroundings beautiful and comfortable for everyone. She was a creative seamstress and sewed her own clothing and that of her daughter with a skilled eye and hand.

She was one heck of a good cook, too.

Survivors include daughter Beverly A. Fleming of Artesia and her son Eric Warner Robichaux and wife Kelley of Sulphur, La., and their three sons Arden Clark, Clark and Archer; son Russell L. Fleming of Encinal, Texas, and his sons William LaBronc Fleming, wife Molli, and two children Maddox Mae and Knox Crawford of San Angelo, Texas, and Jackson Colter Fleming, wife Cailey, and their children Rylee Danielle, Sawyer Burke and Chazzie of Colorado City, Texas; brother Gayle Webb and wife Paquita, and their family, of the Tulsa, Okla., area; numerous cousins, nieces and nephews; and a host of other relatives and friends, including her four stepchildren and their families.

The family wishes to thank Gentiva Hospice of Roswell and the RAs and med aides at Brookdale Memory Care of Roswell, who gave her the utmost respect and affection during her stay there. She was one of their favorites.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be made to Gentiva Hospice, 400 N. Pennsylvania, Ste.

500, Roswell, N.M., 88201; or the Alzheimer’s Association.

Thank you, Almighty God, for having shared this loving, caring, gracious, compassionate and wonderful lady with us.

She was one of a kind, and she was ours.

Arrangements are under the direction of Terpening & Son Mortuary