Charles J. Simmons

WILLIAMSBURG - Lieutenant General, USA, (Ret.) Charles J. Simmons died peacefully, with his family by his side, on May 8th at Woodhaven Hall, Williamsburg Landing. He was born September 1, 1925 to George and Maurine Simmons, and grew up in Amarillo, TX. Charles was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Calvary upon graduation from West Point in 1946. His first assignment was in Austria, where he served as Aide to the United States High Commissioner, and met and married Joanne Swift. Upon return to the states, Charles received his Masters Degree from Columbia University, and then joined the faculty of the United States Military Academy. From 1958-1960 he served with the Eighth Army in Korea. He rejoined the faculty at West Point from 1961-63; and later served in Vietnam from 1966-1967. Returning to Germany, he commanded the 1st Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, and became the Assistant Division Commander. After an assignment at the Pentagon, he went back to Germany to command the 3rd Armored Division from 1975-1977, and was then appointed Deputy Commander in Chief, United States Army, Europe and Seventh Army. In 1978 he retired from the United States Army. He and his wife later moved to Williamsburg, VA where he resided until his death. Charles is survived by his wife of 63 years, Joanne; daughter, Leslie; son, Charles and his wife Zulfiya; and grandchildren, Rachael, Shannon, Michael and Christopher. Funeral services with military honors will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. Online condolences may be offered at

Funeral Home

Nelsen Funeral Home - Williamsburg
3785 Strawberry Plains Rd. Williamsburg, VA 23188
(757) 565-1141

Published in Virginia Gazette on May 13, 2014