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Julianne B. Simko

Julianne B. Simko Obituary
Julianne B. Simko

Sioux Falls - Julianne B. Simko, 76, passed away March 20, 2020 at Ava's House hospice in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Her family looks forward to welcoming all those who wish to share in a celebration of her life at a later date to be determined.

Julianne was born in Sioux City, Iowa, on October 3, 1943, the daughter of Herbert and Elma (Anderson) Bails. She grew up in Sloan, Iowa and graduated from Sloan High School in 1961. She then attended the University of South Dakota where she earned her bachelor's degree in Education, and later a Master's degree in Education. During her college years, she was a proud member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority.

On June 12, 1965, Julie married John Simko at a country church near Sloan, Iowa. Together, they raised three sons: J.B., Jamie, and Josh.

In her early career, Julie taught fifth grade at Hawthorne Elementary in Sioux Falls until staying at home to care for her young boys. She later co-owned and operated The Gingerbread Center preschool with her good friend Bonnie Brown. Following her divorce from John, Julie embarked on a rewarding 25-year career in the Education Department at Augustana College (now Augustana University) where she oversaw student teacher supervision and certification. The many treasured friendships she built with colleagues and students were a source of great joy to her during her time at Augie as well as in the years following her retirement.

Julie's family and friends appreciated her fun-loving, feisty personality and her wonderful sense of humor. Throughout her adult life, she most enjoyed skiing, golf, tennis, playing mahjong, relaxing at the lake, and traveling. She loved her frequent visits to Portland, Oregon and Larchmont, New York to spend time with her grandchildren there as well as attending the sports, musical and school events of her grandchildren in Sioux Falls. Her sense of adventure led her to memorable trips to Norway, Germany, Switzerland and Africa as well as to New York City where she and her dear friend of 58 years, Jean Beddow, together attended some 90 different Broadway shows.

Grateful for the privilege of sharing her life are her three sons and their families: J.B. and wife Kris and their children, Ella, Ava and Sofia, of McLean, Virginia; Jamie and wife Susie and their children, Kate, Joe and TJ, of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; and Josh and wife Heather and their children, Eden and Paul, of Portland, Oregon. She was preceded in death by her parents, Herbert and Elma Bails, and recently, her only sibling, John Bails.

The family is extremely grateful to Julie's dear friends, Linda Baker, Jean Beddow, Bonnie Brown and Jean Fuller, for their daily visits and the endless love and support they provided, as well as to the numerous friends who texted, sent cards and flowers daily. Your support helped sustain her spirit through the end. The family also extends a special Thank You to the wonderful people at Ava's house for the compassionate care they provided.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be directed to the Julianne B. Simko Educational Scholarship at Augustana University or to the Sioux Falls Pubic Schools Education Foundation. Julie's family will share the date for a celebration of her life in the weeks to come.
Published in The Argus Leader from Mar. 22 to Mar. 23, 2020
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