Gene Simmons, 93, Retired Principal

Arnold Eugene (Gene) Simmons of Baton Rouge passed away on Feb. 12, 2021 at the age of 93 with Gloria, his wife of 74 years, at his side. Gene was born in Baton Rouge to Lille and Shelton Simmons. He was a graduate of Istrouma High School where he was on the football and basketball teams. 

He then served in the U.S. Navy and after returning home, he entered Southeastern College on a football scholarship. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Southeastern and earned his masters plus 30 hours at Louisiana State University. 

Gene was the principal of Brownfields Elementary, Baker Junior and Senior High School and Tara High School. Gene retired from East Baton Rouge Parish School Board as the director of staff development. He was a member of many local organizations. 

He was an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed working in his yard, fishing at his camp on False River and deer hunting. He is preceded in death by his parents Lillie and Shelton Simmons, and his brothers Lamar and Shelton. 

Also preceded by his daughter Shelley and her husband Buster Junkin as well as a great granddaughter Clarabelle Junkin. He is survived by his son, Alan; brother Jimmy (June) and sister- in-law Juanita Burroughs. He is also survived by his grandchildren Kyle (Mandy) Stephanie (Glynn) Jeffery (Rachel) Joseph (Jessica) Victoria (Travis) as well as six great grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren. 

Gene was a devout Christian. He knew that Jesus was his Lord and Savior. He was a member of Blackwater United Methodist Church. Gene’s kind and gentle soul will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him. 

Pallbearers will be his grandsons and great grandchildren sons. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to charity of your choice. Family and friends may sign the online guestbook or leave a personal note to the family at

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