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Jeffrey Simme, 62, Lancaster code enforcement officer

March 25, 1955 - May 22, 2017

He was a tinkerer, handyman and Mr. Fix-it, all rolled into one.

Whether it was a carburetor that needed repairing or kitchen in need of remodeling, Jeffrey Simme of Lancaster could do it.

Mr. Simme was a natural problem-solver and just good with his hands, according to his family.

Mr. Simme, a longtime code enforcement officer with the Town of Lancaster, died Monday at his home, following a long battle with lymphoma. He was 62.

A lifelong resident of the town, he was a 1973 graduate of Lancaster High School, where he served as class president and also was a member of the football team. It was during his youth that Simme picked up the skills that would come to define him in the eyes of his family and friends.

"When he was younger, he used to work for a small garage where they fixed cars and he just got into fixing things," said the former Kathy Nagy-Duke, his wife of eight years.

When the couple built their home shortly after their marriage, Kathy Simme said all she had to do was ask for a special feature or a particular kind of lighting to be installed in a room and her husband would make it happen.

"He would be able to visualize something and make it. He was a creative builder and could tackle anything that needed to be done in the house, and he was meticulous," she said.

Those varied skills and his attention to detail also served him well in his capacity as a building inspector. Mr. Simme was hired by the town in 1980 and retired in January 2016.

Kathy Simme said her husband was generous in sharing his talents, employing them at the homes of friends and extended family.

In his spare time, Mr. Simme's other passion was playing golf. Kathy Simme said her husband proudly recalled the time he hit a hole-in-one on July 28, 2011, at Holiday Valley in Ellicottville.

The Erie Community College graduate also shared his years of experience in code enforcement as a committee member with the Niagara Frontier Builders Association.

He also was a member of the Loyal Order of Moose and a longtime committeeman with the Lancaster Democratic Committee.

In addition to his build-it, fix-it and other tinkering skills, Mr. Simme's family recalled his ready laugh, quick wit and devotion to his family.

Along with his wife, he is survived by two daughters, Kristine Alley and Jessica; a son, Brian Duke; a brother, Larry, a sister, Lori Zappia and a granddaughter.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Friday in St. Mary's Catholic Church, 1 St. Mary's Hill, Lancaster.

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