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Franklin Shelby Simmons


1997 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Franklin Shelby Simmons Obituary
Franklin Shelby Simmons

Memphis, TN

Franklin Shelby Simmons, 20, was born February 9, 1997 in Memphis, TN and died March 7, 2017 in Memphis, TN. He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather James Maxwell and step-grandfather Terry Lamb, and by his paternal grandmother Sylvia Simmons. He is survived by his mother Mimi Patricia Harder and stepfather Brian Thomas Harder; by his father Franklin Sheperd Simmons and stepmother Tera Taylor Simmons; by his siblings Taisa, Joshua, and Aurora Harder, Erin Taylor, and Ward and Audrey Simmons; by his maternal grandmother Mimi Lamb and his paternal grandfather Rodney Simmons; by step-grandparents Harry and Diane Harder and Preston and Lynda Wright.

Shelby was a bright-eyed, silly, high-energy boy who became a polite, philosophical, and overconfident young man who preferred to be called "Frank." He was a parishioner at St. Louis Catholic Church, where he was baptized and confirmed, and at St. Patrick Catholic Church. He attended St. Louis Catholic School, all three White Station public schools, and St. Stanislaus College. He worked at Catholic Charities, Kroger, Mellow Mushroom, Broadway Pizza, and Rock 'n' Dough. Shelby was intelligent, resourceful, and obsessive. Friendly, anxious, and rationalizing. Impossibly resilient, and irrepressibly positive. He was sympathetic and generous, even when he had little to give. He could be incredibly determined, and in his own words, was "probably one of the most non-judgmental people you'll meet." His mother remembers him as "a gentle soul that taught me a lot about patience, kindness, and unconditional love." Shelby was a talented keyboardist and bass player, a singer in the White Station Choir, and a loyal friend. He loved the USA, pets, chocolate milk, and a good bargain. He was entrepreneur-minded and proudly started and operated his own business, Frank's Yard Work & Odd Jobs. He poked fun at his own lack of income by naming his Instagram "Frankrupt," but pointed out in his profile "Price of being a good human being: $0.00." Twenty weeks before his death, he wrote: "I think that in the end, the goal in life is simply to always do your absolute best to be a good person, and to go about doing that without inconveniencing or harming anybody. And most importantly, never give up on yourself." True to his word, Shelby never gave up on himself. And we never gave up on him. He had at least 18 different addresses in his life, including being homeless at the end. Now, he is happily home for good.

Please pray hard for an end to the epidemic of heroin.

In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to Catholic Charities of West Tennessee and/or to the Humane Society of Memphis & Shelby County. Visitation will be at St. Louis Catholic Church, 203 South White Station Road, Memphis, TN 38117, on Saturday, March 18, from noon to 1pm, followed by a Rosary at 1pm and funeral Mass at 1:30pm. Burial will be at Memorial Park.
Published in The Commercial Appeal on Mar. 16, 2017
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