Russell Simon

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Long-time South Belt resident Russell Simon, 41, died of cardiac arrest and lung failure on October 22, 2016, in an Oklahoma City hospital, after collapsing on his job. At the age of eight, he had undergone open-heart surgery at Texas Children’s Hospital, with Dr. Denton Cooley performing the operation.

Born June 10, 1975, to Glenn and Linda Simon, Russell spent his first two decades in the South Belt area.

After attending Frazier Elementary, Russell went on to Faith Christian Academy, where he graduated in 1994.

He then went to work for his father’s commercial wall-covering business and served as an installer until his father’s retirement.

From there, he worked in disaster recovery, working in Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina and also in New York after Super Storm Sandy. More recently, he worked for Blattner Energy installing wind turbines.

Friends had come to call him Rasta Man. He had a gusto for life, for his friends, for making new friends, for crawfish boils—especially with his extended Simon family from Louisiana

In addition to his parents, survivors include his sister, Christine Elliott; her husband, Christopher Elliott; and his nephews, Jonathan, David, and Stephen; and niece, Anna.

“How does one write about this level of loss,” his father asked. “How does one capture a life that touched so many lives in a few short sentences? No words can express what we have lost with the passing of Rasta Man or Russell. He would want everyone to keep on Russellin’. It will always be me and my RC.”

The family will receive friends from 6:00pm until 8:00pm Friday, October 28, and the service celebrating Russell’s life will be held at 10:00am Saturday, October 29, both held at Niday Funeral Home. Russell will be laid to rest in Vance, Texas on Sunday, October 30.