Obituary: Charlie Simmons, Puget Sound Shipyard

TUESDAY, JULY 18, 2017

Charlie Simmons, who rose to a number of leadership positions at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and worked closely with SSPC: The Society for Protective Coatings to help bring new methods, standards and technology to the shop there, has passed away at age 64.

Born Charles Wayne Simmons in Wharton, Texas, Simmons served in the Navy as an ear, nose and throat technician before being moved to Bremerton, Washington, where he began as an apprentice at Shop 71. He worked his way up through the ranks to serve as nuclear director and as preservation improvement coordinator.

Beloved Supervisor

“He had a good way with the workforce,” said Kevin Jones, paint shop supervisor at PSNS. “He could get out, get the details, and come back and relay that and get the work moving.”

“He was always out there, went out with the crews,” said PSNS paint shop resource manager Allen Hamilton. “He stood with his employees; if they were in the right, he’d always defend them.”

Simmons wasn’t just about work, though; as supervisory production controller Deena Mead noted, “He was a jokester. He was personable, and he encouraged people to excel.”

SSPC Supporter

In his role as preservation improvement coordinator, Jones said, Simmons “was our guy for getting us new technology, new methods. He had great interaction with SSPC, as well as [the Navy’s other three public shipyards].”

“Charlie was a highly respected member of the navy preservation community,” said Joseph Walker, vice president of Elcometer Inc. and vice president of SSPC. “Charlie was a tremendous supporter of SSPC and ensured that all of the paint operations staff were trained to our standards. He was a regular attendee of our conference and encouraged the active participation of his managers and craft workers in SSPC training and activities.”

Simmons passed away June 20 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He is survived by wife Cheryl Simmons, son Zac Simmons and daughter Lexi Simmons, as well as three brothers and three sisters, and his mother, Charlie Lee Simmons.

His family requests that, in lieu of flowers, those touched by Charlie’s life make a donation to the National Pancreatic Cancer Foundation.


Tagged categories: NA; North America; Obituaries; Personnel; Program/Project Management; Shipyards; U.S. Navy

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