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Anthony Simonich

October 5, 1920 — May 29, 2024

Anthony Joseph (Tony) Simonich, 103, passed away May 29, 2024, in Sun City West, Arizona. He was born October 5,1920, in the Strawberry Hill neighborhood, Kansas City, Kansas. He was preceded in death by his wife Frances (Heath) Simonich, parents, Anton and Rose (Milcinovic) Simonich and siblings Frank Simonich, Theresa Dragosh, Wilma Cigich and Rose Janes. He is survived by his daughter Mary Ventura and her husband Randy Sedlacek, Roeland Park, Kansas, and many nieces and nephews.

A memorial Mass will be celebrated on June 24th at 11:00 a.m., Holy Family Catholic Church, Kansas City, Kansas. Visitation at 10:00 a.m. at the Church. Private burial.

Tony had a truly wonderful life and he enjoyed all of his 103 years. Tony and Frances Heath married on February 12,1949 at Holy Family Church and were married for 61 years until her passing in 2010. Their 50th anniversary was celebrated at Holy Family as well. Tony and Fran lived in Kansas City, Kansas until his retirement when they moved to Sun City West, Arizona seeking warmer weather and the opportunity to play golf year-round.

His first job was selling newspapers on Minnesota Avenue when he was a youngster. The money he made went toward financing poker games with his pals.

Like so young men at the time, Tony enlisted in the Navy in 1942 and served as an aviation machinist mate in England. After the war, he worked for F. S. Edwards Tobacco and later joined the General Cigar Company as a salesman until his retirement.

Ever the sports fan, he played baseball when he was younger and enjoyed bowling as well. When he was still able, he and Mary attended one or two Royals spring training games a year in Surprise, AZ. He liked nothing more than to watch golf on TV as well as football, baseball or just about any other sport.

Daily poker games at the Sun City West Community Center were a big part of his routine for many years and he made lots of friends among the “poker guys”. Tony was an excellent golfer and was so proud of his 3 holes in one. However, at 93, he decided it was time to give up golf when he no longer was shooting under 80. When it was pointed out that most golfers would be thrilled to shoot under 80, he just shrugged and declared he wasn’t going to go out there and embarrass himself.

One of his favorite pastimes was watching old movies especially ones starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers or Gene Kelly. Not surprising considering how much he loved to dance. At one time Tony was a ballroom dance instructor at the Pla-Mor Ballroom in Kansas City, Missouri. He was a fan of big band and any polka music.

Don and Virginia were very special friends. Tony and Frances vacationed with them for over 30 years. In the course of their travels, they visited all 50 states. The two families often celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas together with Don and Tony always marking the holiday celebrations with a martini or two.

When he was no longer able to live on his own he moved to Brookdale Sandridge Independent Living in 2017. Tony lived there 5 years until the need for more care necessitated the move to Brookdale Camino del Sol Memory Care. The staff of both facilities adored Tony and worked with Mary to plan incredible birthday parties for him

each year. Tony looked forward to playing bingo and participating in a variety of activities. Music programs were always a favorite. Brookdale staff provided a loving, caring home for Tony and his family cannot thank them enough for the care he received.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to The Rose and Anton Simonich Family Scholarship Fund c/o Bishop Ward High School, 708 N. 18th Street, Kansas City, KS 66102, Holy Family Church, 274 Orchard Street, Kansas City, Kansas 66101 or a charity of the donor’s choice.

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