November 23, 2013 12:11 AM
Colleen, 62, died Wednesday, November 13, 2013 after a long battle with a rare neurological disorder known as Cortical Basal Degeneration (CBD). Colleen was born in Houston, Texas, and graduated from Rice University before moving to Santa Barbara in 1979. Here she worked for the US Geological Survey doing stream flow measure- ments while she obtained a degree in Mechanical Engineering from UCSB.
Colleen had a way of meeting life totally head-on, and she usually had a crowd right behind her feeling privileged to be on her activities train. It might be in her work as an engineer at Vetco dealing with deep sea tasks or at Able Engineering developing hardware to hold solar panels in position on the International Space Station. Or it might be in her involvement in her children's activities - PTA President at Foothill School or helping out with the Santa Barbara Seashells Youth Sailing program. She was always on the go, and whether you were family or friend or co-worker or soccer or biking or swim buddy or travel companion, you just wanted to be included. She made it all so much fun.
Colleen is survived by her husband of 31 years, Bob Simon and by her daughter Katie, 27, a budding comedian in New York City. Other survivors are her sisters, Karen Kegg in Santa Barbara, Kathleen Price in Houston and Diane Schroeder in Austin. Sadly, Colleen's son Jeff Simon died in 2007 at the way too early age of 22.
Colleen will be remembered for those magnetic, beaming eyes and smile, her never ending organizing of a new project, activity or trip and her ability to make you feel as enthusiastic as she was about every one of these activities.