A funeral service will be held today for a local World War II veteran who died as a result of a motor vehicle collision in Mount Airy.
The traffic-related death of Warren G. Simmons on Friday was the only one reported in Surry County during the July 4 holiday weekend, which the N.C. Highway Patrol observed from Thursday of last week through Monday.
Simmons, 95, a resident of Marion Street in Mount Airy, died after the Volvo he was driving collided with another vehicle shortly before 10:15 a.m. Friday on N.C. 89 (West Pine Street) near Papa’s Scooters.
“He pulled out in front of a pickup truck,” Surry Emergency Services Director John Shelton said of the elderly man, who was traveling alone.
“There was a lot of damage to both vehicles,” Shelton said of the wreck to which Surry County EMS paramedics responded and transported Simmons to the hospital.
“And we transferred him to the trauma center and he died later,” the emergency services official added of Simmons’ passing late Friday night at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem.
Shelton said Simmons’ age was a key factor for his not surviving the collision, although he was known for being robust even for his advanced years.
“He was a very active gentleman,” the emergency official said of Simmons, which included still mowing his own yard.
Meanwhile, the driver of the pickup, whose name and address were not available, reportedly did not suffer any life-threatening injuries.
In addition to being a veteran of World War II, Simmons was well-known as a photographer, gunsmith and a longtime employee of Tickle Auto Parts here. He also is said to have built artificial limbs in Washington, D.C., about 70 years ago.
Simmons was a retired hospice worker, a member of First Baptist Church and a member of Renfro Masonic Lodge 691 of Mount Airy.
A graveside service for him is scheduled Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Oakdale Cemetery.
Other details regarding the wreck were unavailable from the Mount Airy Police Department, which on Tuesday had not released a report on the incident to which it responded.
“The investigator has a couple more things to add to the report,” Capt. Alan Freeman explained.
Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.