(Thursday - December 17, 2020) - Norma (Romagnoli) Simone was born on November 2, 1923, in Iron Mountain, the daughter of Tulio and Ada (Spigarelli) Romagnoli. After a long and fruitful life, she left this world on December 16, 2020.

She was raised at 802 N. Milwaukee Ave. in an Italian community. Norma spoke fluent Italian as a young girl. She attended Iron Mountain high school and graduated Valedictorian of her class in 1941. Due to her advance skills and knowledge, Norma was able to skip a grade and graduate a year ahead of schedule. She proudly received the American Legion Award in high school for her patriotism and leadership. She served as editor of the Mountaineer newspaper and also tutored several of the football players to keep them eligible to play. Too young to follow her brothers Henry and Wally in the Navy during WWII, Norma decided to attend business school and work as a secretary for Penny Andreini Heating & Oil after high school graduation. She volunteered in the Civilian Air Defense Drills in the U.P. before entering the Navy. In November 1942, at the age of 19, Norma enlisted in the U.S. Navy. She asked the enlisting officer if she could spend the holidays with her family before being shipped out. In January 1943, she completed basic training in Cleveland, Ohio, and became a WAVE in the Navy specializing in communications. After serving in California, Norma was sent to Honolulu, Hawaii, and served there during WWII from 1943 to 1946.

In Hawaii, along with making numerous life-long friends, Norma met her future husband, Nicholas John Simone from Astoria, Queens New York, who was also a sailor. They married in May 1947 and lived in New York, where their two daughters, Candy and Cathy, were born. After several years in New York, Nick and Norma moved back to the Midwest and resided in Aurora, where they owned and operated the Double N Bar and Supper Club from 1950 -1960. Their son Nick Jr. was born during this time.

Their next adventure was to dive into the insurance business in 1960. They moved to Iron Mountain, where they purchased the Frank Morett Insurance business and later, Norman LaFave Insurance Agency. The Simone Insurance Agency has been located on Stephenson Ave. in Iron Mountain since that time. Their youngest son Paul was born in Iron Mountain, and both Nick Jr. and Paul and their staff run the agency today. Norma had a strong work ethic and a loyal commitment to the insurance agency. She worked there well into her 90's as office manager. Norma was thrilled when her granddaughter, Ellissa Simone Howe, joined the business eight years ago, making it a three-generation family agency. Norma & Nick enjoyed attending the annual insurance conventions, where they reminisced with their lifelong friends.

Norma served as president of the PTA when her children were in school and was active in the local Zonta International Club, The Business & Professional Women's Club, and The Paisano Club.

Proudly serving her country during WWII at a time when few women listed in the military made Norma a member of "The Greatest Generation." Along with her granddaughter Christina (Simone) Caliebe, she took the Honor Flight to Washington D.C., where she and her fellow WWII veterans were honored and thanked on behalf of a grateful nation.

Norma was a member of the U.P. Navy WAVES and regularly attended reunions and kept in touch with her fellow servicewomen.

Norma remained a lifelong member of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, her childhood parish. Family, friends, and Iron Mountain were dear to her heart. Never wanting to leave the U.P., she often called the area "God's Country". Her greatest passions were her Italian heritage, Italian cooking, and family. She loved to entertain her loved ones, setting a beautiful table with her finest china and crystal. Upon visiting her at her home, one would often find her baking and listening to Perry Como, Frank Sinatra, or Lawrence Welk. She would watch old black & white movies until the wee hours of the morning.

Norma was a thoughtful and generous grandma who loved to send "care packages" to her out-of-town family members. She never missed a special occasion with her far-reaching packages of cards, gifts, and homemade baked goods. When family came to town, along with wonderful homemade meals, Norma would treat them to a dinner at her nephew Dwight Romagnoli's Supper Club. You could often find her enjoying a walleye dinner there on Friday nights.

Norma was an avid sports fan and enjoyed watching the Green Bay Packers, the Tigers, the Yankees and Big 10 sports. She always rooted for the underdog!

She leaves behind her four children: Candis (Mykle) Jacobs of Peachtree City, Georgia, Cathy (Dr. Bruce) Main of Marysville, Washington, Nick (Jeana) Simone and Paul (Sheri) Simone, both of Iron Mountain; 10 Grandchildren: Dr. Mykle (Ashli) Jacobs, Nicole (Derek) Duiser, Jeff (Laura) Main, Cari (David) Main, Christina (Scott) Caliebe, Dr. Nick (Christina) Simone, Elissa (Randall) Howe, Abbie (Logan Tarleton) Simone, Eric (Brandon) Simone Haner and Chelsey (Justin) Taylor; and 15 great grandchildren. She also leaves behind her nephews Dwight Romagnoli and Bob Simone who always said that Norma was their favorite aunt.

Norma was preceded in death by her husband of 60 years, Nick, her parents Tulio and Ada Romagnoli, and brothers Henry and Wally Romagnoli.

A private family service will be held. Msgr. James Kaczmarek will officiate. Burial will be in Cemetery Park, Iron Mountain.

In Lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Carmelite Monastery or Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.

The family wishes to thank the wonderful, caring staff at Freeman's Convalescent Home as well as Norma's compassionate caregivers Jana LaPoint and Mirela Brandusa. Norma lived a long, full life and has now gone to be with the Lord. She was loved and will be greatly missed by her family and friends.

You may leave a condolence or tribute for Norma's family online at:

The family has chosen Jacobs Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Iron Mountain to honor Norma's legacy of life.


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