In memory of

Dave Simonson, age 55, of East Helena

January 27, 1962 – January 22, 2018

David Bernard Simonson, 55, beloved husband, son, brother, uncle, grandpa and friend, completed suicide on January 22, 2018 at home in his beloved Elk Horn Mountains southeast of Helena.

Depression created an impenetrable fortress that blocked the light preventing the love of Dave’s family and any sense of comfort and confidence from reaching him. He, no doubt, is as grieved as we are that his unwanted death has caused so much pain. But, no doubt too, he asks for our continued love and affection and, especially, for our understanding of his pain.

Dave was born on January 27, 1962 in Conrad, Montana to Cliff and Mary (Harris) Simonson. He grew up in Conrad and graduated from high school. He attended Eastern Montana College (now MSU Billings) and received a BS in Biology. He worked in the environmental sciences field, most recently at the Department of Environmental Quality Air Monitoring Section. A highlight of his career was when he worked for Maxim Technologies and was part of the group testing for anthrax at the Senate Hart Building in Washington, DC after 9-11.

Dave married Vickey (Kokoruda) Anderson on December 12, 2003 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. They were best friends and they lived for one another. They enjoyed motorcycle trips, exploring Montana’s breweries and spending time with family, especially grandson, Kacen. And, they survived more than one remodeling project!

Dave will be remembered for always being there for family and we cherish the hard work that flowed through his hands. He loved the land and was happiest when working in the field. We are thankful for the knowledge, never-ending work and dedication he brought to maintain the legacy of the Kokoruda ranch.

Dave is survived by his spouse Vickey, step-daughter, Katie (Mark) Clayton of East Helena and step-son Brent (Jeja) Anderson of Nevada City, California; parents Cliff and Mary Simonson of Choteau, MT; sisters Sheila Yuhas of Great Falls, Charlotte (Loren) Tacke of Fairfield, MT and Jennifer (Mike) Birnel of Choteau; brother Scott (Angela) Simonson of Helena, MT; sisters-in- law Sherry (Tom)  Cladouhos of Helena and Valerie (Jim) Hand of Georgetown, TX, brothers-in-law Dennis (Debbie) Kokoruda of Cincinnati, OH and Dan (Sam) (Cindy) Kokoruda of East Helena and the light of his life, buddy and grandson Kacen Clayton. Dave is also survived by numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins and great nieces and nephews.

Dave as preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Ben and Ella Barbara (Guth) Simonson and maternal grandparents Clint and Barbara May (Moritz) Harris.

A celebration of Dave’s life will be held on Saturday, June 9 at Kennedy Park in East Helena from 1 – 4 pm in a come-as-you-are open house style. Please consider bringing a donation of food for Helena Food Share.


Read the thoughts and memories, then feel free to add your own.

  1. Ryan & Johanna Tooke says:

    You are in our prayers.

  2. Patty Vossler says:

    Dear Vicki and family,
    I’m so sorry to hear about Dave. My thoughts and prayers are with you

  3. Rachel Reese says:

    I am beyond words, with sadness for you and your family.
    I promise to be praying for all of you.

  4. Frank and Leora says:

    Our deepest sympathy goes out to you on the loss of Dave. I know that there is little we can say to console you but please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this tragic time.

  5. Nancy Rosaaen says:

    I’m so sorry on your loss of Dave. You are in my thoughts & prayers.

  6. Diana Grant says:

    Vickey – Please accept our sincerest condolences on the loss of your husband. Lifting you up in our thoughts and prayers.

  7. Harold & Belinda says:

    We are so sorry to hear about your loss of Dave. You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.

  8. Vicki and Kim Mees says:

    To all of Dave’s family, words can not express the sorrow and sadness we share with all of you during this tragic time. I’m so thankful mom and I got to see Aunt Mary, Uncle Cliff, Dave (and I got to meet you for the first time) Vickey here in Forsyth for lunch. Our thoughts and prayers are with each of you.

  9. Fuzz and Sandy Carnahan says:

    Vickey, Uncle Cliff, Aunt Mary and Family,
    What a special cousin Dave was. I have such wonderful memories shared with Dave and the family from his early years to the more recent one we shared on our trip back to North Dakota last summer. You have left footprints in our hearts that can never be taken from us. RIP Dave… to the rest of the family we love you!!! Keeping you all in our thoughts and prayers.

  10. Rochelle (Miller) Davies says:

    Vickey and family – I am so sorry for your loss. Dave was such a special man, and a very dear friend to my dad. My favorite memory of Dave is he and my dad trying to make beer in the pink bathtub in our house in Billings. We will miss him.

  11. Pam & Steve Zehntner says:

    Our heartfelt sympathy for your loss.
    We will always remember Dave and our time with him.

  12. Anna Albertson says:

    Dearest Vickey, My heart goes out to you in this extremely difficult time. I am so sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Lovingly, Anna

  13. Marilyn & Bob Maphies says:

    Vickey & Family,
    We are so sorry for your loss. You will remain in our thoughts & prayers.

  14. Gayle (Morello) Casey says:

    Vickey and Family,

    I am so sorry for your loss. There are never enough or the right words to say during such a difficult time. Know that I am thinking of you, sending thoughts and prayers and a huge hug. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you. Many prayers to you and your family!! Love, Gayle

  15. Dani Sue and Tony Lindeman says:

    Vickey and Family,
    I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of Dave. You’re in our thoughts and prayers.

  16. Peg Norgaard says:

    Vickey..i am so sorry for your loss. May God hold you in the palm of his hand. My prayers are with you always.


    Dear Vickey and Family,
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Please know you are being kept close to our hearts during this difficult time. We love you, Catherine, Hank and the boys

  18. Rae Lynn Christians says:

    Vickey and family,
    You are in our thought and prayers. There are no words Rae Lynn and kids

  19. Terry and Ilene Hawkinson says:

    Vicki Terry and I were deeply saddened to hear of Daves death. Our hearts and prayers are with you and your family. Terry and Ilene Hawkinson

  20. Bobbie Kokoruda says:

    Dear Vickey, Aunt Ardie and family,
    Our hearts are deeply saddened over the loss of your beloved husband, David. Know that we are here for you and your family. Our belief is that David is in God’s loving arms and is at peace. We also belief that David’s presence remains with you, dear Vickey. Perhaps you can draw strength from knowing that David lives on in spirit and shall not forget you. We love you all! Bobbie Kokoruda, Loren Greene and Linda & Bill Birmingham

  21. Shari Strachan says:

    Dear family,

    We send our deepest condolences to you at this time of great sorrow. Our hearts are with you.

    Dan and Shari Strachan

  22. Audrey Stromberg says:

    You and all of Dave’s family are in my prayers, Vickey.

  23. Kay Smith says:

    Dearest Vickey,
    Just read about Dave. It breaks my heart. Our son, Bill lost his battle with depression five years ago this past February and we struggle with it every day. Sending love.

    Kay Smith

  24. Bonnie and Ray Johnson says:

    Enjoyed Dave very much as part of our Maxim family!!

Add your thoughts and memories.