Home Page

In Memoriam: Jan Simpich, co-founder of Simpich Character Dolls

Jan Simpich holds the "Standing Angel," one of many dolls she personally designed, in December 2006, shortly before she and her husband Bob retired their Simpich Character Dolls business.
Westside Pioneer file photo
       Jan Simpich, 81, who co-founded and ran Simpich Character Dolls with her husband Bob for 54 years, passed away May 19.
       A memorial service will be held at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Colorado Springs Tuesday, May 27 at 11 a.m.
       The artist couple started the family business in 1952, the same year they were married, operating from a home studio until 1978, then (in response to sales demands) from a historic building in Old Colorado City. Over the years, they created scores of characters from clay, with each finished product needing to be individually painted, dressed and mounted. They retired in 2006.
       The same building is now the home of the Simpich Showcase, which consists of their son David's marionette theater, a museum of the Simpich character dolls, a gallery including Bob's and her artwork and a “secondary market” for Simpich dolls.
       The Simpiches had three children in all and adopted another. Jan also leaves 15 grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren and four siblings.
       The daughter of Dr. Charles and Brenda Nickson, Jan was born April 26, 1933 in Independence, Missouri, and studied art at the University of Missouri.
       According to her obituary, “From her youth, Jan revealed creative ability and unremitting focus that were, her family recognized, prodigy; and throughout her life, this giftedness has yielded immeasurable blessing.".
       She died as the result of “a stroke and failing health,” the obituary states.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 5/23/14; Community: In Memoriam)

Would you like to respond to this article? The Westside Pioneer welcomes letters at editor@westsidepioneer.com. (Click here for letter-writing criteria.)