An instrumental figure in the creation of what today is Hays Consolidated Independent School District has passed away.
Delvin James “Red” Simon, 92, of Kyle, passed away of natural causes at his home, according to sources close to the family.
Simon, whose namesake was bestowed on Simon Middle School in Kyle, is best known for his 60-plus year career as an auto salesman and owner of the dealership in Hays County, which began in 1963 when he opened Red Simon Ford in San Marcos.
But he was also known for his role in consolidating the Buda, Kyle and Wimberley school districts in 1967 into what is now known as Hays CISD.
Prior to the consolidation of the districts, Simon, a graduate of Kyle High, served as a 12-year board member of the Kyle Independent School District, according to the Simon Middle School website.
In an interview with the Hays Free Press in early 2017, Simon said the state’s education agency pushed the financially struggling Buda and Kyle school districts to merge in the late 1960s. Wimberley was added to the conversation after the district transferred students to Kyle in 1966.
Over the course of several months, a coalition of 21 school board members from Buda, Kyle and Wimberley met and discussed how they were going to consolidate.
After convincing the public of the idea, all three school boards approved consolidation on May 6, 1967.
After the districts were merged, Simon was unanimously elected to serve as the board president of the new Hays CISD, a position he held until 1972 when he chose not to run for reelection, according to the SMS website.
Simon was born into a farming family in Hemphill in 1925. His family moved to Kyle in 1936 after the death of his mother.
After graduating from Kyle High, Simon saw military service in the U.S. In 1946, Simon began working in the automotive business sweeping out Tom Summer’s San Marcos Ford dealership, according to the SMS website.