Gene "Chet" Zuill passed away at home September 25, 2013, from congestive heart failure. He was born in 1928 in Burbank, California, graduating from Burbank High in 1946. |
Then came the Navy, from 1946 to 1952, including the Reserve time and the Korean War. He served as an electronics technician and deep-sea diver.
Gene spent 35 years with Pacific Telephone, starting in 1948, including work in equipment maintenance, engineering, and real estate. He also worked independently in real estate from the late 1960's through the mid-2000's.
October 31, 1948, was a very special day for Gene. He attended a church meeting where he met his future wife, Lydia, and accepted Christ. Gene and Lydia married April 22, 1949, settling in the Los Angeles area, and then moved to Poway in 1958.
Gene was fascinated with local history. The following are a couple tidbits tying him to that history.
The Zuills were instrumental in naming their street Welton Lane. The Welton's once owned much of that area, including the old Bowron home which they lived in for awhile, and the current Zuill property. Albert Welton was the bell-ringer and an elder at Grace Trinity Church (now Cornerstone Church), where the Zuill's attended; Louise Welton played organ at the church and taught piano and organ to the older Zuill children.
Fletcher Bowron, mayor of Los Angeles from 1938 to 1953, was born in 1887 in the house adjacent to the Zuill property. His mom had planted a Texas umbrella tree by then, a tree that still provides welcome shade to the Zuills. They met Fletcher Bowron when he repurchased the home in the 1960's.
Once, in the middle of the night, Gene heard a loud crash coming from Poway Road. He ran out half-dressed, took charge of the gathering bystanders to lift the truck off the driver who was pinned under it, then gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until the ambulance arrived, probably saving his life. He stayed in touch with the victim for years afterward.
Gene had remarkable recoveries from many serious illnesses, which he believed involved miracles from God in connection with the prayers of many people.
He is survived by his wife, Lydia; one sister; six children; and many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, other relatives, in-laws, and friends.
Gene was known for his sense of duty and devotion to God, country, family, his employers and clients, and those in need. He will especially be remembered for his dedication to the care of his head-injured daughter, Lucie, who fell off her horse in 1977. He was also known for his friendliness, sense of humor, and wide range of skills, knowledge, hobbies, and interests. He is dearly missed.
There will be a memorial service for Gene on Saturday, November 23, 2013, at 11:00 AM at Living Way Church, 13609 Twin Peaks Rd., Poway, his home church for the last 30 years. A reception will follow in the social hall.
He will be interred at Miramar National Cemetery in early January 2014. www.remembered-one.com/eczuill.
Published in the Pomerado News on Nov. 21, 2013