Marvin Simon, businessman, school founder, dies at age 82


Marvin R. Simon, St. Louis businessman, volunteer and founder of the former English Language School in University City, died Sunday, June 8, 2008, of a heart ailment. He was 82 and a resident of Clayton.

Mr. Simon was a broker in the scrap iron industry, and in the 1970s was president of the local chapter of the Iron and Steel Recycling Institute. He was working full-time at the time of his death.

Mr. Simon was founder and chairman of the former English Language School in University City, which taught English to immigrants. The school awarded him its distinguished service award in 1997.

From the early 1980s to mid-1990s, Mr. Simon worked to help train and find jobs for the handicapped, first with the Jewish Employment and Vocational Service, and later with its successor organization, MERS/Goodwill.

Mr. Simon later received the Samuel S. Greenberg Leadership Award from the National Jewish Employment and Vocational Services organization.

Mr. Simon was brought up in Cincinnati. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, when he was stationed in Okinawa.

He earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Cincinnati and a master’s degree in business administration from Ohio State University. He moved to St. Louis in 1951. A service was held last week at Congregation Temple Israel.

Burial was at Beth Hamdedrosh Hagodol Cemetery on Ladue Road.

Among the survivors are his wife of 54 years, Barbara Rich Simon; two sons, Robert Simon of Singapore and John Simon of Washington; a daughter, Kathy Simon of Olivette; a stepson, Randall Neustaedter of Redwood City, Calif.; and 12 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to MERS/Goodwill or the St. Louis Chapter of the American Diabetes Association.