William Zern Obituary

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In Memory of

William R. Zern Jr.

August 13, 1917 - December 31, 2012
Obituary

William R. (Bill) Zern , Jr. age 95 went to his eternal home on December 31, 2012 at his home surrounded by loved ones. Bill was born on August 13, 1917 in Philadelphia, PA and was raised in Altoona, PA, came to Miami, FL in 1939, and then to West Palm Beach, FL in 1942. He played trombone in Junior and Senior High Schools, R.O.T.C. Band, Penn State Blue Band and the 3rd Army Air Force Band at Boca Raton. He graduated from Penn State with a BA in Business Administration and later graduated from the Applied Mortuary Science School at the University of Minnesota. While at Penn State he was Stage Manager of the Penn State Thespians and...
William R. (Bill) Zern , Jr. age 95 went to his eternal home on December 31, 2012 at his home surrounded by loved ones. Bill was born on August 13, 1917 in Philadelphia, PA and was raised in Altoona, PA, came to Miami, FL in 1939, and then to West Palm Beach, FL in 1942. He played trombone in Junior and Senior High Schools, R.O.T.C. Band, Penn State Blue Band and the 3rd Army Air Force Band at Boca Raton. He graduated from Penn State with a BA in Business Administration and later graduated from the Applied Mortuary Science School at the University of Minnesota. While at Penn State he was Stage Manager of the Penn State Thespians and Treasurer of Sigma Chi Fraternity. In Altoona, he was the Secretary/Treasurer of the Life Underwriters Association. In 1946 he married Eileen Davis from W.P.B. and they were blessed with 2 sons, Mike and Jim, and 2 daughters, Carol and Marsha; 7 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. They were married over 60 years before Eileen preceded him in death. Bill began to work for "Moe" Mizell in 1943 and later served as Sec./Treas. of Mizell-Faville-Zern Funeral Homes for numerous years. Always generous with his time and service to others, he served as President of the WPB Rotary Club, President of the United Way of the Palm Beaches, Commander of the Palm Beach Post #12 American Legion, and President of the Palm Beach Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution. He also served ten years as Treasurer and two years as Secretary for the PB County Barbershop Harmony Society. He served as President of the PB County Funeral Directors Association, President of the "Y" Men's Club of the Y.M.C.A. of the Palm Beaches, President of the Cotillion Club of the Palm Beaches, Treasurer of the Gold Coast Penn State Club, and Treasurer of the PB County Veterans Council. Education and religion were always very important to Bill. He served as President of Southboro Elementary P.T.A., Treasurer of Band Parents Association at Conniston and Forest Hill Schools, and Chairman of the organizing committee for Boy Scout Troop #46. He also served as Treasurer of Presbytery and Synod Committees on Christian Education; Chairman of the Finance Committee; Treasurer for the Common Christian Education Committee for both Synods of the Presbyterian Church in Florida; and Chairman, Treasurer and Book Store Manager for the Florida Presbyterian Synod Schools. Bill served as Campaign Chairman for the Red Cross and United Way; and was a member of the Jaycees and Lion's Club. He served on the Advisory board of the Southdale Branch of the Bank of Palm Beach and Trust Company. He also served on the Scholarship Committees for the First Presbyterian Church, PB Post #12 American Legion and Rotary Club of W.P.B., as well as the The DeMolay advisory board at Harmonia Lodge #138, F.&A.M. He had a 75 year Masonic pin, and was in the Barbershop Harmony Society for over 50 years. He sang in his own Church Choir for the First Presbyterian Church, WPB for over 50 years, where he also served on many official boards and committees. Bill was a Life Member of P.B. Post #12 American Legion, and a member of the Historical Society of Palm Beach County. His chief claim to fame, though, was being the "Bat Man" – pollinating the Sausage Trees at night at places such as Bethesda-By-The-Sea, Society of the Four Arts, the Orchid Society, the residence of former Rotarian Wally Spears, as well as Bill's own Tree. Bill said that one of his most rewarding years was from 1976 to 1977 when he was permitted to serve as the President of the W.P.B. Rotary Club, and the many great things that were accomplished. He attended five International Rotary Conventions, as well as travelling to Peru with Mel Greene, and with other club members to Barbados. Bill, his late wife Eileen, his son Mike and his son's wife Susie are all Paul Harris Fellows in the Rotary Club. Visitation will be held 5PM – 8PM, Friday, January 4, 2013 at Mizell-Faville-Zern Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 6411 Parker Ave., West Palm Beach, FL 33405, (561) 833-4061. Funeral Services will be at First Presbyterian Church of West Palm Beach, 301 South Olive Avenue, West Palm Beach, FL 33401, (561) 655-1707 at 11AM, Saturday, January 5, 2013. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to a charity of your choice.

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