Richard LeVan ‘Buddy’ Simmons, 64, gifted woodworker known for his unique creations

Richard LeVan ‘Buddy’ Simmons

LELAND — Richard LeVan “Buddy” Simmons, 64, unexpectedly died Sunday, May 30, 2021, and joined his Lord and Savior.

Buddy was married to the love of his life, Phyllis Henderson Simmons, for 38 years. They raised four daughters together, Christina Abigail “Abby” Batts-Nelson (William “Billy” Nelson), Amanda Leigh Hall (Kevin Hall), Trina Gayle Lewis,and Chancey Nicole Maditz. Buddy also leaves behind 12 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Buddy retired from Fluor Daniel’s/Mundy Maintenance after 38 years of service at the Dupont/DAK Americas Cape Fear site. During his time there, he had the opportunity to meet many people and develop long-term relationships on and off site.

Buddy had a love and passion for many things, such as, collecting everything, gardening/canning, sports, camping, carpentry, but most of all, his family and the Lord Jesus Christ. His love of sports showed with his coaching of his girls in softball. No matter how many hours he had worked, or how tired he may have been, it did not stop him from practicing with the girls daily or going to a softball field to participate in an endless number of games.

If you were around Buddy, it did not take long for you to see how much he loved his family. He enjoyed spending time with them, from working on their homes, to family meals followed up with a competitive game of cards. His motto was, “If you don’t play to win, you may as well sit on the bench.”

When it came to his grandchildren the sky was the limit. You could always see the twinkle in his eye as he looked at them. Even though he was blessed with many, he had a special place in his heart for each and every one of them. As he picked them up from school at times, he would say there was nothing that made him happier than seeing them looking out for him to pull up and pick them up. They all truly had him wrapped around their fingers.

His passion for carpentry went well beyond work. His ability to envision a project in a way that most could not was exceptional. He could take a piece of scrap wood and transform it to look as if it were the most expensive piece. The Lord blessed Buddy with a gift beyond measure.

He was a collector of “all” things, which allowed him to continuously help others. He often told his family, “one day all of this will be yours,” and one of his favorite sayings to his wife was, “you see junk, but I see treasures.”

Buddy’s true love was Jesus Christ. He always wanted everyone to know Him as their Lord and Savior. There was nothing that made him any happier than traveling to the mountains to meet with his “mountain friends” for a weekend of Bible study and to grow in his faith; but of course, there was always food, laughter and fellowship.

He will be deeply missed by so many, and a huge void will be left in their hearts, but his desire would be for them to fill it with Jesus.

The family will receive friends from 1 to 2 p.m., Friday, June 4, at the First Baptist Church of Leland, 517 Village Road, Leland. Funeral services will begin at 2 p.m. followed by interment at First Baptist of Leland Church Cemetery.

Share online condolences with the family at Wilmington Funeral & Cremation.

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