Armilla Martha Simon passed away peacefully after several years living with two forms of dementia - frontal temporal dementia and Alzheimer's.



Click this link to view a photo album of Armilla.  Photos of Mom

To view the phots in a slideshow, click the three vertical dots in the upper right and select "Slideshow"





Here are the words that Chris said at Mom's funeral:


February 17, 2024


Looking back on my childhood, other than a few epic fights with my brothers, it was pretty great.  As a little kid my view of life was pretty much limited to my own family.  I watched my parents - how they treated me - how they treated others - how our family interacted. 

I don't remember really thinking about it, but I suppose inside my little brain I assumed other families were the same as ours.  That other moms and dads were just like mine.

But as I got older I spent time with other families - families of my friends - and I met their parents.  And I discovered a few differences from my mom and dad.  One thing I noticed was that other parents gave their kids things that I didn't get.


- Other parents gave their kids lots of hugs.

- Other parents gave their kids lots of pressure to do well in school, or to excel at sports. To be the BEST.

- Other parents gave their kids a ride to school in a big fancy car.  Big velour seats - lots of luxury.

- Other parents gave their kids the idea "You're the most important person in the world."

- Other parents gave their kids that Atari game console that you could connect to your TV. (I played that thing at my friend's house - it was really great!)


Later I realized those were things I wanted, not things I needed.  (Well, except maybe for that Atari game console.)

Now I know that Mom gave me exactly the things I needed to grow into the person I've become. 


These aren't things like toys, or fancy vacations, but qualities, or traits, that have been important in my life.    She gave these not by teaching or lecturing, but simply by living out who she was.


Here are a few things I got from Mom:

·       Decisiveness.  Mom didn't spend a lot of time fretting over what to do, or second her guessing decisions.

·       She gave me Confidence.

·       Tolerance.  She wasn't prejudiced against those different from her.

·       She modelled Humility.

·       Calmness.  She didn't worry about things that may or may not happen, or things out of her control.

·       She gave me a strong work ethic.

·       and Wisdom.  She gave good advice about friendships, my education, and bigger things in life.


I'm so grateful Mom, that you passed these on to me.  (Oh yeah, and she also gave me pre-mature gray hair!)


Another thing about Mom - she allowed us to make decisions for ourselves.  A while back, Mom and Dad were visiting Judy and I in Minneapolis, and Mom told me she disagreed with something one of my brothers planned to do.  I thought she was going to share what she said to him about this, but instead she said "Sometimes I just have to keep my mouth shut and let them do what they're gonna do."   I've personally tried to use this approach with my own daughters.  (you'll have to ask Tahlia and Maya how successful I've been! :-)


So, thank you Mom, for being a model of how to live my life.  And thank you Dad, because the two of you were definitely partners in this.  (And partners in pretty much everything else for the last 65 years!)


I'm so fortunate that instead of giving me the things I wanted, you gave me something much more important - the qualities that make me who I am.





Here are the words that Judy said during the luncheon after the funeral


Thank you is what comes to mind when I think of you Armilla.


Thank you for giving me the loving, smart, adventurous, artistic son of yours to cherish as my life partner.


Thank you for your sewing prowess that helped me make our bedspread and throw pillows and created more than one awesome Halloween costume for our girls (the genie costume was a fan favorite).


Thank you for holding family close through sisters’ weekends, Wieferich family reunions, Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving suppers, and boxes and wall loads of family pictures (I don’t think you threw away a single one!)


Thank you for showering Christmas on every corner of your home from the holiday soap to the santas and reindeer displayed on every surface. And, in these most recent years, keeping the Christmas spirit up all year long!


Thank you for making DuWain act silly just to get a rise out of you (though maybe he did that all on his own).


Thank you for loving all your children, grandchildren, granddogs and great grandchildren.


Thank you for building a home whose décor was welcoming, spotless, and full of meaningful momentos and treasures.


Thank you for taking Tahlia and Maya for a week each summer and filling their time with love and craft projects (and giving Chris and I a parenting break!).


Thank you for living out God’s wish for a world where all religions, races, ethnicities are welcomed.


I’m sure I didn’t say all this enough when you were alive and cognizant enough to hear it and understand it. I hope you hear it now in your peaceful rest.


And since I do have the opportunity to say it to those that are here…

Nathan, Paula, Blaine, Patti, Joel, Christine, Aaron – thank you for being here and present for Armilla. With Chris and I being out of town we are so grateful for all of you.


I’d like to end with this quote by Rabbi Jacob Philip Rudin:

"When we are dead, and people weep for us and grieve, let it be because we touched their lives with beauty and simplicity. Let it not be said that life was good to us, but rather, that we were good to life."





Mom's obituary was written by her oldest granddaughter, Elizabeth Wolf


Armilla M. Simon Obituary


Armilla Simon, beloved wife, sister, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, passed away peacefully on February 10, 2024, at the age of 86. Born on September 30, 1937, she was the cherished daughter of Henry and Agnes (Siefker) Wieferich. Armilla was the seventh of thirteen siblings, sharing her childhood with a large and loving family.


Throughout her life, Armilla showed both love and strength to all who knew her. She was preceded in death by her parents; daughter-in-law Dawn; brothers LaVerne, Vernon, and Hank; sisters Sandra Wieferich, Mareta Arnold, Ladonna Ortiz, and Caroline Meyer; and numerous dear friends and family members. She is survived by siblings Elnora Hacker, Joyce Vibber, Rosella (Lyle) White, Althea (Keith) Crosslan, Diane (Bob) Courter, Sue Wieferich, and Tim Meyer. Her passing leaves a void in the hearts of those who were fortunate enough to have known her warmth and kindness.


Armilla shared 65 beautiful years of marriage with her devoted husband, DuWain. Together, they built a life filled with love, laughter, and cherished memories. Armilla was a dedicated mother to her five sons - Aaron, Blaine (Patricia), Chris (Judy), Nathan (Paula), and Joel (Christine).


Her role as a grandmother brought her immeasurable joy. Armilla was adored by her 7 grandchildren - Elizabeth, Marah, Brenton, Dresden, Tahlia, Maya, Jordan, and Noah. She took great delight in watching them grow and thrive, cherishing every moment spent together.


In her later years, Armilla embraced the role of great-grandmother with love and tenderness. Dominick, Lillyen, Adriana, Lydia, Otto, Max, and Karah brought light and laughter into her life.


Armilla had a passion for music, singing, and dancing the polka with her forever partner, DuWain, often bringing joy to those around her with impromptu dancing or sing-a-longs around her player piano. Armilla was also a talented seamstress, painter, and crafter, using her creativity to enrich the lives of others.


In addition to her roles as wife, mother, and grandmother, Armilla worked as a secretary at the School of Criminal Justice for Michigan State University, where she made lasting impressions on colleagues with her warmth and dedication.


A Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, February 17 at 11am, at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish (3615 S Cedar, Lansing MI 48910) with a visitation beginning at 10am and a luncheon immediately following mass.


Donations may be made in Armilla's memory to the Alzheimer's Association.


Though she may be gone from our sight, Armilla will forever remain in our hearts. May she rest in eternal peace.