Barbara Dell “Bobby” Baim Simpson, of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, was born on November 1, 1932, and went to her heavenly home on June 2, 2023, at 90 years old. Raised in and embracing her Jewish heritage throughout her life, Bobby later became a Christian.
Bobby was preceded in death by her husband, James Milton (Jim) Simpson, Jr.; her parents: Annette Rutstein Baim Goldberg (Louis Goldberg) and Leo A. Baim; her two sisters: Jean Baim Gershner and Deloris (Dee) Baim Levi Melton; and her preborn granddaughter, Ashlynn Elizabeth Howell.
Jim and Bobby were married on February 23, 1957, and had three sons: James M. (Jim) Simpson, III (Debra); John Simpson (Deborah); Donald Simpson (Susan); and her much-wished-for daughter, Annette Simpson Roddey (Collin). She had five grandchildren: Jason Simpson (Kimberly), Sarah Simpson Howell (Adam), James Simpson, IV (Pamela), Lyle Simpson, and Eli Roddey; five great-grandchildren: Jamie Simpson (Dakota Gaines), Mackenzie Howell, James “Jay” Simpson Duckworth, Cassidy Howell, and Sadie Simpson; and one great-great-granddaughter, Josie Gaines. She also had three nieces: Sharon Levi Moon, Jan Gershner Woodhead, and Cara Nichols Young; and two nephews: Ira Gershner and Alan Levi all of whom she loved greatly and continued to be part of their lives even from afar.
Bobby graduated from Pine Bluff High School in 1950, attended Lindenwood College in Missouri, and graduated from University of Texas in 1954 with a degree in journalism. She was the first female police reporter and photographer for the Pine Bluff Commercial where she worked until she was married. They then moved to El Dorado for two years with Jim’s work before returning to Pine Bluff.
Bobby grew up working with her family at Baim’s Department Store, worked at several local stores while she raised her family, and ultimately owned her own shop, Tutu, Inc., which she owned and operated for almost 40 years. “Miss Bobby” fitted generations of little girls in dancing shoes, tights, and tutus, which brought her great joy. For many years, she attended every dance recital in town. In her later years, she was affectionately known around town as “Miss Tutu,” the giver of the purple pens.
Bobby was always very active and supportive of her children’s activities from equestrian activities, boxing, scouting, and of course, dancing. She also served as homeroom mother and PTA president.
To say that Bobby was an animal lover would be an understatement as she doted over many cats, dogs, and horses during her life. She greatly enjoyed feeding her beloved racoons at her backdoor. Being at home with her three cats, Micki, Tommy, and Lulu, was one of her last wishes.
Bobby was a member of Congregation Anshe Emeth and a member of the Temple Sisterhood.
Bobby had a number of close friends, and particularly in her final years, Vernon Walker and most recently her loving caregiver, Nan Lancaster. The family is grateful to both of them.
Memorials may be given to First Baptist Church of Pine Bluff or the Jefferson County Humane Society, PO Box 2233, Pine Bluff, AR 71613. Bobby wished to be cremated and interred with both her beloved husband and mother. A visitation will be held on Thursday, June 29, 2023, from 5:00-7:00 p.m. at Fuller Hale-South Funeral Home.
For online condolences, please visit FullerFunerals.com