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Rare Disease Claims The Life Of A Local Father [PHOTOS]

Angie Sims via Facebook

I was saddened when I learned that the father of a good friend and former classmate of mine passed away this week. Conny “Skip” Sims was in good health, until about two months ago when he was diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease, or CJD.  How rare is this disease?  The odds are one in one million.

Skip grew up in Arkansas, and his children and family have fond memories of their Hillbilly Christmases.He would dress up in overalls and a Santa hat while serving catfish, hush puppies, coleslaw with all the southern trimmings, a big southern-style breakfast or chili and grilled cheese.

He began showing signs of illness on May 15, and his health rapidly declined.  My friend, Angie, told me that they took him off the ventilator last Sunday, July 13th at 2:00pm, and he passed just 14 hours later at 4:30am on Monday, July 14.

There are plenty of foundations and non-profit organizations that raise money and awareness for diseases such as cancer, leukemia and other terminal diseases, but because of the rarity of CJD, there isn’t much out there to promote research.  That’s why the Sims family is holding a fundraiser to help fund research.  You can help by visiting this page on

Angie asked me to share these photos of Skip.  Several with his family, a few of Hillbilly Santa, and one of Angie in her father’s arms as they watched their last Detroit Tigers game together.  This disease hit hard and fast.  A true reminder that life is too short.  All of us at Cars 108 are praying for the Sims family.

In Loving Memory of Conny “Skip” Sims
August 13, 1949 – July 14, 2014

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