OBITUARY

Elisa L Simmons

November 26, 1918March 28, 2021
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Elisa Leonora Small Gale de Simmons was born November 26, 1918, in Panama City, Panama and peacefully passed from this life on March 28, 2021. She was blessed to have lived 102 years before returning Home to Our Lord. Elisa was the daughter of Miriam Gale and Evan Sullivan Small. She was a loving wife and was married for 64 years to Oscar Llewellyn Simmons before he passed in 2006.

Elisa was a devoted and loving mother to her only child, Carlos Enrique Simmons. Elisa is survived by her granddaughter and husband Vivica Naela Miller and Aaron LeEarl Miller; and her grandson Carlos Simmons, Jr. She is also survived by 3 great-grandchildren: Breyona Nicole Simmons, Ancil Luca Miller, and Rafe Julian Miller. Elisa is also survived by many nephews and nieces in Panama as well as the United States. All of these she loved and touched deeply.

Elisa considered Sandi Simmons, her granddaughter’s mother, to be her very own daughter. Elisa met Sandi in 1968 and treated her as a daughter thereafter. Elisa and Sandi were constant companions through Sandi’s pregnancy with Vivica in 1973. Through those 9 months together, they formed a close connection that lasted for the remainder of Elisa’s life.

Elisa was known for her elegance, generosity, and dedication to family. She was often asked for the secret to her vitality and youth. Without fail, she would smile and respond by saying “plenty of rest.” She loved movies, chocolates, dancing, playing cards, puzzles, visiting with friends, and taking care of her family. After her son Carlos joined the Air Force in the 1960’s, Elisa traveled often to New York for visits. She also lived in New York for several years and worked at Merrill Lynch in an administrative role. After returning to Panama in the 1970’s, Elisa maintained close contact with her stateside family through hand-written letters and visits. Anyone that visited her home noticed that she was a meticulous housekeeper. If you visited on a Sunday, you may have been lucky enough to catch her listening to Casey Kasem’s “Top 40” and dancing to pop music.

Elisa remained in Panama until moving to Houston, Texas in 2016, where she lived with her granddaughter and family until she passed away surrounded by love. In her final years, she was able to satisfy her love of children by spending time each day with her great-grandsons Ancil and Rafe. Elisa also formed a close friendship with her caregiver Claire Brown. Claire could often be overheard coaxing Elisa to dance and laugh at silly jokes. The family is forever grateful to Claire for her friendship and the loving care she provided to Elisa.

Elisa was also an active member of Rio Abajo Methodist Church. She kept the “Prayer for Protection” as the bookmark for her personal Bible. It reads, "The light of God surrounds me; The love of God enfolds me; The power of God protects me; The presence of God watches over me. Wherever I am, God is!" Elisa used her red pen to underline these words: light, love, power, presence, and “God is,” which underscored her faith in Him and the Eternity of Love He offers us.

We will celebrate her life on April 11, 2021, at 2:00 p.m. at Brookside Funeral Home - Cypress Creek, 9149 Highway 6 North, Houston, Texas 77095. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Cancer Society at www.cancer.org.

Services

  • Memorial Service

    Sunday, April 11, 2021

  • Webcasting

    Sunday, April 11, 2021

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Memories

Elisa L Simmons

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felipe brossard

April 11, 2021

Our sincerest and heart felt condolences To Sandi Simmons and family. We were moved by the beautiful remembrance you prepared for Elisa. We were witness to the love and care she received from your entire family. May her soul rest in Peace in the loving arms of God.

Sheila Clarke Wilkinson

April 11, 2021

I take the opportunity to express my condolences to Carlos Simmons and his family on the passing of his mother. Elisa was a very pretty woman who took pride in how she looked. I attended the same church with she and her husband, Fuzzy, for many years. May her soul rest in peace. She lived a full life.
Blessings to all her family.

Martha Garcia

April 11, 2021

Vivica has been a lifelong friend that I regard as my Sister. In our 35 years of friendship, she always talked about her beloved Buela. I was finally blessed to have met her when she came to Houston to live out her final years with her only Granddaughter. She was a lovely woman with a beautiful smile that would light up the room. Buela Elisa was blessed to have lived 102 years & we are grateful that she was able to be here for her Great Grandsons. May she Rest in Peace.

Lonnie Small

April 7, 2021

Auntie Elisa's smile has always been one of my earliest memories, and I know that smile will shine forever.

Beulah, Charita & Melania Small

April 5, 2021

We thank God for the wonderful times we had with Aunt Elisa at family gatherings and on many other occasions and visits. She was always jovial and fun to be with. We have lots of happy memories and photos to reminisce and keep her in our thoughts and hearts.
Beulah, Charita & Melania Small

Bridiget Anderson

April 5, 2021

What I remember about my dear Tia Elisa,
Is that she was always so calm, Full of class and sophistication, Her presence exuded peace, joy, and such a lovely sense of humor, It was always so wonderful to visit both her and my cousin Carlos (her son). Now she will be joining with. They were always my favorite memory and will continue to be my favorite memory forever! RIP Tia Elisa

Dianne Wilcox

April 5, 2021

Elisa loved her family and being close to them. I remember when Elisa came to visit Sandi and Vivica when Vivica was young. Elisa so loved her granddaughter and enjoyed being with her. When Vivica was blessed to have two beautiful sons. Elisa cherished and took pleasure in Ancil and Rafe, her great grandsons.

Marie Bosch

April 5, 2021

I did not know Grandma Elisa well but she always had a beautiful smile. I know she loved Vivica very much and her great-grandchildren too. May she Rest In Peace in God’s glory.

Zoraida Medina

April 5, 2021

My first impression was what an elegant woman. As I got to know her she was also friendly and very polite, she could be so funny at times. Loved her family, watching her grandchildren would always put a smile on her face. She will be missed.

Pilar Small

April 4, 2021

I have many fond memories of how my sweet Tia Elisa was so pleasant and welcoming when my parents and I used to visit in her home in Panama. I remember her warm and infectious smile. At times, she would playfully tease me and I appreciated her sense if humor. I will miss her deeply.

Affectionately,
Pilar

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