Laura Hilston Simkins, 63, passed away on Nov. 22, 2013, after years of battling auto
immune diseases. Laura was born March 21, 1950, in Painesville and moved to Maryland in 1970.
She was a loving, devoted and hard-working wife, mother, grandmother, sister and aunt, who
will be deeply missed.
Laura was an active member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Arlington House Chapter, and the Mayflower Society.
Laura graduated from Riverside High School in 1968. She moved
to Maryland in 1970 and later furthered her education at Howard Community College and the University of Maryland, in mathematics and computer science.
She worked at HydronauticsIncorporated as a business systems programmer, and then at ENSCO Corporation where she pursuedwork in signal processing, voice and image processing and recognition and then music recognition.
She worked for Digital Signal Corporation before starting a company with her partner-- Creative
Engineering Concepts; during that time they supported both the defense industry and the
commercial sector. Laura and her business partner hold several U.S. and foreign patents related
to signal processing and free field audio-all of which were conceived before the proliferation of
handheld devices. She most recently worked for L3 Communications, Northrup Grumman IT, and
Signalscape. Laura also managed two other Limited Liability Corporations.
Survivors include her husband, Lee Simkins; son, Scott Simkins; grandchildren, Shelby and
Victoria Barr; mother, Joan Hagan; brother, Michael Hilston (Barbara), sisters, Joni Frank(Rick),
Michele Lakia (Skip), and Marsha Cassels (Tom); and sister-in-law, Pam Brady (Frank). She also
leaves behind many nieces and nephews whom she loved and thought about often, including, Tony
Frank (Ericka Blackburn), Scott Frank (Breeann), Bradley Crowe (Joanna), Dan Frank (Ingrid),
Patrick Brady (Amelia), Tim Brady, Matt Lakia (Tiffany), Sarah Brokaw (Kevin), Neil Lakia (Cam
Kisner), Eric Lakia (Erin), Kelly Fodor (Justin), Martin Hilston(Beth), Bill Hilston (Brittany
Grant), Mark Hilston, Bob Hilston, Zack Cassels (Tess Boutselis), Melanie Cassels. Laura was
preceded in death by her father, Melvin Hilston; and her daughter, Kristina Barr.
A memorial service will be held on Nov. 30, 2013, at 10:30 a.m. at Zion Lutheran Church, 508
Eagle Street, Fairport Harbor.