"Lawrence" D. Larry Simon

Oct 2, 2019
Simon_Lawrence news


10:30 AM, October 12, 2019 at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1301 Kimball Ave., Waterloo


4:00 PM – 7:00 PM, October 11, 2019 at Locke Funeral Home, 1519 West 4th St., Waterloo


Memorial Park Cemetery, Waterloo


Cedar Valley Hospice


"Lawrence" D. Larry Simon, 79, of Waterloo, IA, died at his home on Wednesday, October 2, 2019, following a battle with cancer.

Larry was born November 27, 1939, in Menomonie, WI, the son of Leonard and Frances M. Gerbich Simon. He received his GED at the age of 54. Larry married Diana Bratsch on May 5, 1962, in Danube, MN.

He had been a heavy equipment mechanic and operator for Assink Brothers Construction Co. and then shop foreman at JD Power Equipment. He retired from Black Hawk County Secondary Roads in 2001 after 22 years as a heavy equipment mechanic and operator and also owned Larry & Mike's Repair.

He was a member of Westminster Presbyterian Church.

Larry knew how to operate all kinds of equipment, could fix anything, loved heavy equipment (especially old tractors), and was an Antique Acres supporter. Larry retired so he could work 12 hours a day at his Shop. He enjoyed haggling and always looked for the next best deal buying/selling equipment. He was an outdoorsman and loved Northern Minnesota, fond of animals even keeping pet goats, and since 2010 looked forward to spending winters in Florence, AZ.

He is survived by his wife, son, Mike (Sherri) Simon‚ Waterloo, daughter, Rachel (Terry) Van Dyke‚ Buckingham‚ IA, grandson, Brandon (Amanda) Simon, grandson, Dillion (Tessa) Simon, granddaughter, Cierra (Cameron) Ryan, grandson, Ryan Gindling, granddaughter, Samantha Gindling, great-grandson, Callen Ryan, and two brothers, James (Marilyn) Simon‚ Hibbing‚ MN and Henry (Beverly) Simon‚ Zimmerman‚ MN.

Larry is preceded in death by his parents.


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  1. Craig Merrifield | Oct 15, 2019

    I'm so sorry to hear this. I ran into Larry a few months ago at the hospital. I'm glad we got a chance to visit. Diana you and Larry introduced me to snowmobiles. It was fun times back than on TribLe.

    Peace be with the Simon family.

  2. Robyn Johnson | Oct 09, 2019
    I am so sorry to hear about Larry's passing. One of my favorite memories of my childhood was running kitty corner across the yard and Trible Rd to come over to play with Rachel.  One of our favorite games was to go horseback riding in their backyard. Of course, we had to use our imagination....Larry always had at least one old, giant, blown up inner tube that Rachel and I would then stick inside of an old outer Tractor Tire. With the inner tube securely standing up we could then straddle our tire "horse" and bounce up and down "riding" for hours while the air compressor hummed away in the garage next door and the sounds of metal clanking went on. I also remember all the jet skiing days out at "the pond" by Elk Run. Man, I loved those days. I know Larry took Blayne under his wing and while Blayne has already shared his thoughts in this forum, I also recognize the very influential role Larry played in his life.  Larry didn't have to do that, but he did. I loved all my time at the Simons' house and everything Larry did for me, my brother, and our family. Thank you Larry.  My heart goes out to you, Diana and Rachel, and the rest of the family.  He was one of a kind.
  3. Blayne Johnson | Oct 09, 2019
    I can't begin to explain how heavy my heart is from hearing this news. I greatly apologize for not being able to move things around on short notice and make it back for the funeral! After going through my own father's funeral. I doubt I could keep it together for my second father's funeral!I think it was after my dad passed and there was a Bday party for Larry, or it was some sort of get together. I don't recall. I think i maybe got him a card, or I just got him alone to tell him that although my biological father gave me life, Larry gave me a livelihood. I considered him a second dad. I think that's the only time I saw tears in his eyes. He was man's man. Someone to look up to and idolize. I loved him like my own dad. The repercussions of my time in his garage are still resonating today! From my first love...jet skiis and the water sports, finding my passion of working with my hands and fixing things, being able to troubleshoot a problem, figure the equipment out with no manual and fix it. I've made a good life for myself in the elevator industry from the very skills I would've never had if it weren't from my cherished time with him. And so much more, discipline, manners, hard work, honesty, to name a few. My parents gave me so much, but I was still a little brat sometimes.  When I was to stubborn and ornery with my own parents in my adolescent years and doing things I shouldn't be doing.  Larry was there with a second strong arm to set me straight. Of course hard to take as a young boy full of piss and vinegar. But oh how I appreciate those lessons now!  I honestly can't imagine how I would've turned out if it wasn't for his influence in my life. It scares me really. And oh...the good memories! All the time out jet skiing at that little lake by Elk Run. Most of my fondest memories of childhood are from there. The birth place of "jet man". The lifejacket diaper. The invention of the standup we made into a sitdown with the lawn chair. The constant horsing around and pranks on the jetski. One I fondly think of all the time is when larry disconnected the steering linkage on my jetski while it sat on the beach. He then talked some smack and got me all riled up and ran off down to his jetski knowing I would chase after him. He knew me so well, of course I go after him max throttle! He then proceeded to "bait" me toward the adjacent shore line that was covered in weeds and such in the water. Letting me get closer thinking i'm gonna get a chance to splash him.  Last minute by the weeds, he pulls a hard right and escapes and me with no steering and wide open go straight into the cabbage! Scared the crap out me. I think he fell off laughing so hard. Once I realized I'd been "had". I dont think I quit laughing either. Well played sir...well played! Can't tell ya how many times I used that trick on others in my life. I could go on for hours. He was such a great man. Once life took me away from the waterloo area,  I always loved to stop by and see him when I was back in the area. No need to call, or check by the house on Trible. Just go to the shop, he was there... every single time! Tinkering away on something. Still amazed me every trip with the things he was doing and the skill and knowledge he had. So this is not goodbye dad#2! This is, I'll see you again where the water is always smooth, the sun is always shining, the jetskis never break down, the shop is always clean, knuckles never get busted, tools never break and are always right where ya need em. I'll miss you dearly until then. Your mark here is everlasting with so many. And that is the sign of a great man with a huge heart! Everlasting love and respect, Blayne Johnson
  4. dottie reimer | Oct 07, 2019
    Diana and family.  It has been a very long time but I lived on Trible Rd and our kids played together.  I am so very sorry to see that Larry passed away, please know you are in my thought and prayers through this sad time.
  5. joe and Joan Meany / Elk’s 290 | Oct 04, 2019
    To the Simon family we share our sincere sympathy. May you find comfort from your faith,family, friends and fond memory of your brother, father and grandfather Larry Simon.
  6. Nancy Mahood | Oct 03, 2019
    I was so sorry to read this.  My thoughts are with you all.

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