Harvey H. Sims III
February 27, 1940 – April 11, 2018
Harvey Hillyer Sims III
Harv (78), beloved husband of Barb Sims, passed away peacefully on April 11, 2018 from pulmonary fibrosis. When he was diagnosed 9 years ago, the doctor gave him 3-5 years to live. Harv joked that he was using his “extended warranty.” He was active to the very end, attending small groups, family gatherings, weekly coffee with some buddies, men’s ministry breakfasts, a brunch group with square dance friends, and church (even the Sunday before he passed).
Harv was born in 1940 in Detroit, MI, to Harvey and Mary Jane Sims. He grew up primarily in southern California with his younger siblings Connie and Richard, and their foster sister, Marge. He played football for La Habra High, was recruited onto the team at the University of Washington, and played in the Rose Bowl one year. He was invited to try out for the NY Giants but had injured his knees. He finished his degree in Industrial Technology/Vocational Education at San Diego State University, where he met Barb. They were married in 1964 in Claremont, CA.
Their first child, Derek, was born in 1971, and Lara followed in 1973. They moved to Costa Mesa, CA in 1975 and then Monument, CO in 1985.
In his early years, Harv had a wide variety of jobs including a short time of service in the Marine Corps, commercial fisherman, Disneyland train conductor, two years in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic with Barb, middle school industrial arts and Spanish teacher, and camping director for the San Diego YMCA.
Most of his career was spent in Personnel and Human Resource Development for several aerospace companies including Hughes Aircraft and Cipher Data in CA. He was a member of the founding faculty of Coastline Community College in Costa Mesa, CA. In Colorado, he worked for TRW and CoBank. He then did HR consulting before retiring in 2002.
After remodeling their home, Harv decided to go through EMT training and return to work part time as a Cog Railway conductor and ranger on the Pikes Peak Highway. He also taught Basic Life Support through Memorial Hospital until 2011.
He was active in Monument Community Presbyterian Church, including serving on the Personnel Team for over 20 years. He enjoyed congregational get togethers and was active in many volunteer activities with the church over the years.
His hobbies included sailing, skiing, biking, motorcycles, fishing, building and flying drones and remote controlled helicopters, the Scottish Society and Highland Games, square dancing, genealogy, reading, and history. His most recent hobby was making wooden pendulum clocks.
Harv loved his family dearly. He is survived by his wife, Barb Sims; son, Derek Sims of West Jordan, UT (and his wife, Lisa and daughters, Grace and Ryann); daughter, Lara White of Colorado Springs, CO (and her husband, Amos; son Malakai; and daughter Naomi); sister Connie diGirolamo (Pete) of San Diego, CA; brother Richard Sims (Tece) of Ventura, CA; foster sister Marge Sabo (Walt) who now lives in Mexico; Barb’s siblings, and many nieces and nephews. We will all miss him, his sense of humor, and his interesting stories.
- Barbara Sims, Wife
- Derek (Lisa) Sims, Son
- Grace Sims, Granddaughter
- Ryann Sims, Granddaughter
- Lara (Amos) White, Daughter
- Malakai White, Grandson
- Naomi White, Granddaughter
- Connie (Pete) diGirolamo, Sister
- Richard (Tece) Sims, Brother
- Marge (Walt) Sabo, Foster Sister
Monument Community Presberterian Church
238 Third St, Monument, Colorado 80132
Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation
230 East Ohio Street, Suite 500, Chicago, Illinois 60611
- Memorial Service Saturday, April 28, 2018
Harvey H. Sims III
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April 18, 2018
I’ve known Harv since third grade—the kid who was everyone’s friend. Sometime between 7th and eighth grade, Harv’s body began an amazing transformation. When complete, no one could match the combination of his height, physique, and agility. He became a powerhouse of energy and determination and the star running back for our high school. With that came many well-deserved accolades.
In those days, there wasn’t much known about knee injuries, except they came with the game of football. Macho boys-to-men played through the pain until their knees became unstable enough to make them ineffective. Harv exemplified that period in football history. After we graduated high school, I next saw him at one of the early high school reunions. We were still young, and conversations revolved mostly around work and family. For Harv, however, it was about his knees. One of his docs had already suggested that he’d be a candidate for total knee replacements. I don’t think we were even thirty.
Harv’s e-mail address came up on the class roster at our 50th reunion and I contacted him. He’d appeared on a public television series about America and Pikes Peak. His love for the peak and what he did there led to my wife, Jennifer, and I to visit him and his wonderful wife Barb. They were amazing hosts.
Although Harv found oxygen at times helpful he insisted on taking us on a tour of Pikes Peak. Earlier, he’d found it tough hauling the people up to safety who’d injured themselves while climbing the peak, and he retired. Harv’s nature hadn’t changed, however. We’re no slouches when it comes to traveling but having a personal guide to this legendary peak and home to one of the craziest races in the world was extraordinary--especially with Harvey Sims guiding us.
I can’t think of a man more affable or who felt so responsible to do everything better than it had ever been done. Barbara, let’s take solace in knowing Harv’s everybody’s friend somewhere up there above 14,000 feet.