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September 18, 2022

Jacqueline (Jakkie) Ann Simmons (nee Leopard) died Sept. 18, 2022, with family at her side, after a courageous four-year battle with metastatic breast cancer. She was 76. Survived by her husband, Robert (Bob); daughter, Heather Simmons-Ferguson of Manotick; son, Peter (Heather Castellan) of Aurora; and grandchildren, Christopher and Nicholas Ferguson, and David and Edward Simmons. Also survived by her sister, Pauline Houston of Flintshire, Wales; niece, Claire (Thomas) Houston-Harley of Chester, England; and nephew, Andrew Houston, also of Chester, England. Predeceased by her father, G.H.F. “Harry” Leopard; mother, Hilda Weigh; and her son-in-law, Peter Ferguson. Jakkie was born in Mancot, Flintshire, North Wales, in 1946. She obtained a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wales and a teaching certificate from the University of London. She emigrated to Canada in December, 1970, and settled in Kincardine, with her husband and daughter, in the blustery winter of 1971. She soon started her life-long efforts to educate the youth of the community. She began by soliciting the people of Kincardine in an effort to set up a play school in the town, which would have had government subsidy. However, undaunted with the council’s rejection, she was instrumental in setting up, with the aid of the Anglican, United and Presbyterian churches, a co-operated play school. She then set up a private daycare/playschool with her friend and neighbour, Marion Nisbett. When her children were in school, she went to the University of Western Ontario to obtain her primary school qualifications. She then taught at St. Anthony’s School for many years, retiring in 2006. She taught mainly Kindergarten and special education, and was literacy expert for the Roman Catholic School Board for a number of years. Jakkie was an avid reader and an expert in British and west European history. She enjoyed travelling and would be known to quietly correct or supplement a tour guide’s oration. She also enjoyed being with family and having coffee with her friends. Gardening was one of her passions, and she was an active member of the Anglican Church of the Messiah in Kincardine. The family thanks all the health-care workers for their kindness and fine service provided by the Kincardine, Walkerton and Owen Sound hospitals, the Care Partner nurses, and McKechnie Pharmacy. A special thank you to Dr. Jason Murray and Dr. Ismail Aboo, the Oncology Unit at Owen Sound and the caring and compassionate staff at Huron Shores Hospice at Tiverton Park Manor. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, all these people worked tirelessly to give her excellent medical support. As per her request, she has been cremated. A celebration of her life, for family and friends, will be held at the Kincardine Legion, Oct. 29, 2022, from 2-5 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Operation Smile, Operation Eyesight, Huron Shores Hospice, the Canadian Cancer Society, the Anglican Church of the Messiah or a charity of your choice; arrangements entrusted to Grey Bruce Cremation and Burial Services,