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Dallas Businessman Harold Simmons Dead at 82

Harold Simmons at Dallas' Crystal Charity Ball earlier this month. (Photo by Jeanne Prejean)
Harold Simmons at Dallas’ Crystal Charity Ball earlier this month. (Photo by Jeanne Prejean)

Harold Simmons, for decades one of the most consequential figures on the Dallas scene, died last night at age 82. His death at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas was announced in emails from family members and friends. The billionaire businessman/philanthropist controlled a number of public and private companies and gave away hundreds of millions of dollars over the years to nonprofit groups. He earned his money by his wits, having grown up the son of two schoolteachers in a “shack” without plumbing or electricity in Golden, Texas, in Wood County. Harold’s brother, Glenn, died in March. Funeral arrangements are pending.