On October 6, 2018, Marie and John Simovich’s 70th year of marriage was celebrated with a lively and joyful party attended by many friends and family. Both were born in New Mexico coal mining camps in 1928; she in Sugarite on July 24 to Elvira and Emilio Giampietri and he in Van Houten, New Mexico, on December 11 to Pete and Mary Simovich. They met in junior high school, became friends, and their friendship blossomed into love. In 1948, after John was discharged from his Army Service in Japan, they were married, and thus began a love affair that lasted for the remainder of their lives.
After a few years in New Mexico, they moved to Pueblo where they were both employed in the banking industry. Eventually the lure of the Denver metropolitan area brought them to Littleton where they quickly found jobs-John as comptroller of Littleton National Bank and Marie as the supervisor of the loan department at the First National Bank of Southglenn. As the years passed, John received many promotions and awards and was elected president of the Banking Administration Institute. Marie continued her career as Loan Servicing Officer at Wells Fargo Bank.
Although engrossed in his career, John found time to be an active member of the Elks and Rotary Clubs. Marie was a volunteer at the Swedish Hospital Gift Shop for several years after her retirement and, while John played a few rounds of golf, she joined neighborhood friends in knitting caps for the homeless.
Their Catholic faith was the cornerstone of their lives. On Saturday afternoons and mornings on Holy Days, they could always be found attending mass at St. Mary’s Church. They sat in the same pews and made many friends in the church community. Marie was an active member of the St. Catherine Laboure Circle whose mission was to help parish members in need. She was also in the group that cooked and served meals for families and friends after funeral services. John served on the Church Finance Committee for many years. He especially enjoyed making provisions for student scholarships at St. Mary’s school.
Their passion for music and dancing was legendary. As a nine year old Johnny taught himself how to play the harmonica, the beginning of his fascination with many musical instruments. He was a whiz on the accordion and could sit for hours playing the piano and keyboard at family celebrations. To watch them dance whether the jitterbug, the waltz, or the latest dance fad, they would soon be “center stage” with family and friends applauding their “moves.”
Aunt Marie and Uncle Johnny, as they were lovingly known, are survived by fourteen nieces and nephews and many great and great-great nieces and nephews. When the couple entered their seventh decade three of the great-greats were like their grandchildren. Even in their seventies, they loved taking care of Daniel, Melissa and Michael; having sleepovers and always serving much requested...delicious homemade pasta with Marie’s special Italian flair.
Many in their family have wonderful memories of traveling with them on trips in the U.S. and abroad. They were avid Nuggets and Broncos fans and attended the games of both teams for years. They still owned their ‘54 Chevy and could be seen on warm summer days driving around Littleton in their prized “old” car.
Uncle Johnny and Aunt Marie were exceptional. Their warmth, compassion, generosity and just plain fun truly nurtured all our souls. They will be missed and fondly remembered by all who were fortunate enough to be in their orbit. May they rest in peace and dance the night away.
Please consider a donation in John and Marie's memory to the Colorado Alzheimer's Association or St. Mary's Church, Littleton. or a charity of choice.