In memory of

Gary Jon Zumach

June 14, 1938 - September 21, 2017
From: Lake View, IA
Gary Jon Zumach

Gary Jon Zumach

Born: June 14, 1938
Died: September 21, 2017
Age: 79
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Gary Jon Zumach was born June 14th, 1938, in Algona, IA, to Alvin and Gertrude (Theesfield) Zumach.  Having been raised in Fenton, IA, he was baptized and confirmed in the Lutheran Church.  In 1957, he graduated from Fenton High School, then attended Rail Road School in Minneapolis, MN.  From there, Gary went into the Army.  During this time, he was stationed in Livorno, Italy, and he later worked at the Embassy Post Office in Rome.  On June 8th, 1963, he married Janet Tjaden.  They were blessed with 2 daughters:  Julie and Katie.  To Gary, everyone was a friend and he always had a joke to share. 

Gary was a jack of all trades!  He attended beauty school and later operated a salon in Wall Lake, IA.  He then worked for Jan’s father at Tjaden Oil Company in Lake View, delivering gas.  His next endeavor was partnering with his father in Zumach Sales, selling organs, sewing machines, and vacuum cleaners.  Gary learned salesmanship strategies from Alvin and they grew a reputable repair business in Lake View and Storm Lake. 

Gary loved animals from little on.  At the age of five he ordered an alligator through the mail, which was later eaten by his pet white rat when he needed a place to keep the alligator.  His greatest adventure and lifelong dream was purchasing Warbonnet Zoo in Hazelhurst, WI in 1990.   Gary, Jan, and family spent 14 years caring for the animals and sharing them with the public.  They raised lions, tigers and bears, plus many other exotic animals!  Gary’s favorite was Anna Banana, a Hamadryas baboon.

Gary enjoyed several hobbies:  fishing, leather crafting, making fishing lures, and jewelry.  In his younger years, Gary loved to bow hunt which led to making arrows and establishing a bow hunting club.  He loved to hunt pheasants, jack rabbits, cottontails, and coyotes with his dogs.  He also was the founder of the Iowa Coursing Association, a type of lure racing for sighthounds, in the 1970’s.  40 years later, he returned to this hobby, racing his beloved whippet, Kipp.

Gary is survived by his wife of 54 years, Janet of Lake View, IA; his 2 daughters: Julie DenHerder (Steve) of Adel, IA, and Katie Hoffer (Josh) of Sheboygan Falls, WI; his 6 grandchildren: Elizabeth DenHerder(18), Hannah DenHerder(18), John DenHerder(18), Sarah DenHerder(13), Gabe Hoffer(13), and Ainsley Hoffer(7); brothers and sisters-in-law: Shirlee Ashbaugh of Rockwell City, Don and Donna Tjaden of Iowa City, IA, Bob and Judy Stehr of Ames, IA; many nieces, nephews, family and friends. 

Gary was preceded in death by his parents, Alvin and Gertrude Zumach; parents-in-law Harold and Florence Tjaden; and brother-in-law Gene Ashbaugh.

 

SERVICES
Celebration of Life
1:30 p.m. Sunday 
Sept. 24, 2017
Peace Lutheran Church
Wall Lake, Iowa
OFFICIATING
Pastor Roger Carlisle
VISITATION
11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Saturday Sept. 23, 2017
Farber & Otteman Funeral Home
Lake View, Iowa
INTERMENT
Burial
2:00 p.m. Saturday
Sept. 23, 2017
Ferguson Cemetery
Lake View, Iowa

Condolences

Sunday, October 1, 2017 at 10:02 AM
“Jan and family, Sending thoughts and prays for you. May the Lord bless you and keep you. Shalom.”
- Jody Stock Witzel
Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 11:00 AM
“Sincere condolences to Jan, Julie, and all of Gary's family. May you find comfort in one another and in sharing memories of Gary's life. Some of my fondest childhood memories are from going to the Zumach farm for piano lessons. My love for animals was nurtured there. I loved the peacocks, the geese, and the other exotic birds that Gary collected. I remember hearing all of the birds at the house in town during my piano lessons. As a child, I wanted to have many pets and going to the Zumach house was as close as I could get to that experience. My parents weren't to keen on having pets. I really have Gary to thank for inspiring my love of animals. I just wanted to share that story with you. Heartfelt condolences to you as you celebrate the memory of Gary's life.”
- Anne Wetzstein
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“My deepest sympathy to all, reading the obit made us smile, remembering all the good times and laughs we shared at many things. Love, David and Judy”
- David and Judy Howrey
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“Jan, Julie and Katie and the Zumach family,
Our prayers and thoughts as Gary is called Home. God's blessings.”
- Randy and Marilyn Schmitt
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“Jan, I am so sorry to hear of Gary's passing. I send deepest sympathy to you and your family. Remember the good times. I'm sure there were many.”
- Darlene McConnell Swanson
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“Sincere condolences to Jan, Julie, and all of Gary's family. May you find comfort in one another and in sharing memories of Gary's life. Some of my fondest childhood memories are from going to the Zumach farm for piano lessons. My love for animals was nurtured there. I loved the peacocks, the geese, and the other exotic birds that Gary collected. I remember hearing all of the birds at the house in town during my piano lessons. As a child, I wanted to have many pets and going to the Zumach house was as close as I could get to that experience. My parents weren't to keen on having pets. I really have Gary to thank for inspiring my love of animals. I just wanted to share that story with you. Heartfelt condolences to you as you celebrate the memory of Gary's life.”
- Anne Wetzstein
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“Sorry to hear of Gary's passing. As kids in the fifties, we were neighbors until my parents moved to another part of Fenton. Ironically, I bought his parents former house here in Fenton back in 2000. We use it as a summer home, spending the summers here rather than Calif. I don't recall him being interested in critters, but have been told that one bit me once.
I saw him a time or two when he came to Fenton's Sweet Corn Day. He spent a few minutes looking thru his former residence one of those times.
I see that your pastor is a Roger Carlisle....ask him if he was a vicar at Ascension, in Torrance, Ca., back in the seventies. We are still official members there, but moved to Indio, Ca., last Jan.”
- Loren Krause
Monday, September 25, 2017 at 12:08 PM
“We are so sorry for your loss! He will be missed! May his stories love on through his wife and daughters! Loved listening to his stories!”
- LuAnn & Mike Norris
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