Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

The Great Seal of the Choctaw Nation
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Gloria “Shortie” Simmons

Born: 9/29/1923

Died: 1/19/2013

Maiden Name: Van Deventer

Honorific: n/a

Gloria “Shortie” Marcella Van Deventer Simmons, 89, of Arlington, passed away on Jan. 19, 2013. She was born Sept. 29, 1923, to the late Billy Van Deventer and original enrollee Mabel Hill Huss in Mexico, Mo. Shortie grew up in Mexico, Mo., where, as a sixth-grader, she met her future husband. She followed Bob for 32 years throughout the Marine Corps world, with time spent in North Carolina, Virginia, Hawaii, Japan, California and Kansas. She was the founding member of the Marine Corps Gift Shop in Quantico and was active with the Marine Corps Aviation Wives. Shortie was a proud member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She was an enthusiastic member and pillar of the First Christian Church of Falls Church community for 50 years. She laughed and danced throughout life, and always spoke her mind. She was the spark that lit up the world around her, and the glue that held family and friends together.

She was preceded in death by her son, Brook Simmons. She leaves behind her beloved husband of 68 years, Col. Robert L. Simmons USMC (Ret.), whom she married Oct. 28, 1944, in Chicago; daughter Jill (John) Graff; grandchildren, Laura (Beth) Short and Chris (Emily) Graff; and great-grandson Arthur Graff