On Friday, Oct. 26, 2018, long-time Kamiah resident Norman Dean Simler, age 93, passed away after a long battle with cancer.
Dean was born in Woodland on June 28, 1925, to Frank and Ruth Simler. He fought in WWII as a member of the 101st Airborne, and on his return, married Evelyn Kellum and farmed at Woodland for many years. Upon retirement, Dean and Evelyn moved to Kamiah and went on many happy road trips across the U.S. and Canada. Dean and Evelyn also led an active social life in Kamiah, including doing bowling and volunteering on the Grove mammoth dig.
Dean was one of the founding members of the Kamiah Museum, and did other volunteer work in the community. He stayed active into his 90s, delivering Meals on Wheels with his daughter, Janette, playing (and frequently winning) pinochle, and making whirligigs in his shop. He will be very much missed by his family and friends, many of whom have one of his colorful whirligigs to remember him by.
Dean is survived by his three daughters, Sherry Simler and Janette Hiatt, both of Kamiah, and Barbara Simler of Boise; a granddaughter, Kary Hiatt, of Spokane, Wash; and a great-grandson, Nik Wethington of Seattle Wash. His wife, Evelyn, preceded him in death.
Following his cremation, Dean will be laid to rest with Evelyn in a private ceremony at the Woodland Cemetery. A potluck lunch to celebrate his life will be held at the Kamiah Senior Center on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 11 a.m. Family and friends are invited to attend. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Kamiah Senior Meal Site, P.O. Box 551, Kamiah, ID 83536.