Obituary of Larry Zernach
Edmund Lawrence “Larry” Zernach, age 81, of Peachtree City, Georgia, passed away peacefully on Saturday, July 28th 2018 at Southwest Christian Care Hospice with family by his side.
Larry was born on April 27th, 1937 to Edmund & Sarah (Ohlmansiek) Zernach in Milan, Indiana. He grew up in Lawrenceburg, Indiana where his passion for helping others started early with delivering newspapers and serving as a lifeguard at the city pool.
While still in high school, Larry attended an annual picnic of the Methodist Youth Fellowship at Clifty Falls State Park near Madison, Indiana, where he saved the life of a 14-year-old boy who had slipped from a path and had rolled to the side of a cliff and was hanging precariously, about 100 feet above the floor of the canyon. While sending another boy for help, he tried to calm the hysterical boy and work his way closer to him. He talked the boy into grabbing onto a stick and eventually was able to grab the boy by the wrists and pull him to a safe area where they could wait until others came and pulled them both up to safety. Larry received the Young American Medal for Bravery from President Eisenhower in 1957 for this act of heroism. He was also honored by the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission and American Legion. This example of helping others continued to be a theme throughout his life.
Growing up in Lawrenceburg, Indiana during the 1940s and 50s, Larry experienced the height of the “Hoosier Hysteria” basketball craze in Indiana. Playing basketball at Lawrenceville High School, Larry’s teams faced off against the Milan High School basketball team featured in the movie Hoosiers. Larry often bragged about this. Hoosiers was his favorite film.
To pay for his college education, Larry worked in Clearwater National Forest in Idaho, as a smokejumper fighting forest fires. He would be there multiple summers living and working in the mountains at Canyon Ranger Station and then return to Indiana for fall classes at the end of the season. He had a strong work ethic in everything he did.
Larry graduated from Purdue University in 1959 with a degree in Forest Management. After graduation, he worked for Owens-Illinois in Tomahawk, WI where he married Jane Anderson on June 2, 1962. This year marked their 56th Anniversary. During his career he worked and lived in Tomahawk, Wisconsin; Orange, Texas; Toledo, Ohio; Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin; and Peachtree City, Georgia. He also served his country in the U.S. Army at Fort Gordon in Augusta, Georgia from 1962-1964.
Larry enjoyed the outdoors, golfing, traveling, volunteering, and walking. He was also an avid sports fan. Along with his favorite sport of basketball, he loved baseball & football. Growing up near Cincinnati, Ohio, Larry was a fan of the Reds, where he would often attend games with his father. After moving to Wisconsin, Larry became a loyal Packers fan. Of all the games he attended at Lambeau Field, his favorite was the “Ice Bowl” game in 1967.
He was a member of the Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Knights of Columbus, St. Vincent de Paul and he also delivered food to those in need. He was a people-person who never met a stranger. Caring, truthful, and generous, he was a man of faith and integrity.
Larry was preceded in death by his parents, Ed and Sarah Zernach, and numerous other aunts, uncles and cousins.
Survivors are his wife Jane and daughter Lori (Bob) Burgess of Peachtree City, Georgia; son Steve (Kathy) Zernach of Tomahawk, Wisconsin; son Gary (Bridget) Zernach of Cumming, Georgia; 5 grandchildren: Sam Burgess, Knoxville, Tennessee; Derek (Anne) Zernach, South Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Ryan, Nick and Marisa Zernach, Cumming, Georgia; and 1 great grandson Lawrence Albert Zernach, South Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
The Memorial Service for Larry Zernach will take place at 12:00PM on Saturday, September 1, 2018 at St. Mary Catholic Church in Tomahawk. Visitation will take place from 11:00AM until the time of Mass at 12:00PM.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in Larry’s name may be sent to SW Christian Care Hospice, 7225 Lester Road, Union City, GA 30291 or St. Vincent de Paul, c/o Holy Trinity Catholic Church, 101 Walt Banks Rd, Peachtree City, GA 30269.
Krueger Family Funeral Home & Cremation Services is assisting the family with arrangements. You may view the full obituary and leave online condolences at www.kruegerfamilyfuneral.com