Samuel Zeman Jr., 93, of Huntsville died Wednesday, May 5, 2021, at home with his family and friends. He was the son of the late Samuel Zeman Sr. and Anna Pavelcick Zeman, of Chicago, IL, where he was born and grew up. Sam had been a resident of Huntsville for 70 years and called it home. He graduated from the University of Illinois in Champagne/Urbana, Illinois with a BS degree in chemistry and did post-graduate work at Vanderbilt, UAH, and Florida Institute of Technology. A Korean Conflict army veteran, he was assigned to the 9330 Technical Service Unit at Redstone Arsenal, where he worked as a Propellant Research Chemist in the Army's Rocket Development Laboratory. He continued employment there as a civilian for several years before he joined Thiokol as a Rocket Engineer. He developed expertise in several disciplines and made major technical contributions to a large number of military and space rocket systems. He retired from Thiokol as Director of Quality in 1989 after 31 years of service, during which he held various technical and management positions in Rocket Engineering and Quality. He subsequently worked for 27 years as a consultant in rocket technology through Stone Engineering, ASI, and ERC. He holds 12 US patents associated with rockets and explosives. Sam was preceded in death by his loving wife of 55 years, Eleanore 'Nora' Mikrut Zeman and a brother, Milan P. Zeman, of Bullhead City, AZ. Survivors include his loving wife, Elizabeth Hall Zeman, PhD; daughter, Jill A. Zeman, of Scottsdale, AZ; son, Dr. Mark S. Zeman of Cumming, GA; grandchildren, Lesley G. Elliott (Mike) of Salt Lake City, Bret S. Goldstein of Meza, AZ, and Grace E. Zeman of Cumming, GA; three great-grandchildren; two nieces; two nephews and two stepsons and their families. During retirement, Sam enjoyed working around the home he designed, travelling around the US and the world, reading, friends, and volunteer work. He was a founding member of Covenant Presbyterian Church and enjoyed many activities there. He read to elementary children in several programs and always enjoyed being in their presence. He was an active member of the Golden K Kiwanis Club where he served in several positions including that of president. He was a strong, loving presence in the lives of his family and friends. He and his beautiful blue eyes will be very much missed. Sam gave special thanks for the care of Dr. Don Evans and the friendship of Dr. Jane Roark, as well as, that of his many Thiokol and Kiwanian friends. If desired, in lieu of flowers, he would wish to be remembered with memorial donations to Steady for Life, 990 Gilstead Circle, Huntsville, AL 35802; the reading program at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 301 Drake Ave., Huntsville, AL 35802; the new South Branch Library, c/o Huntsville Library Foundation, PO Box 443, Huntsville, AL 35804, or the American Heart Association
. Visitation will be from 1:30 to 2:00 p.m. Monday, May 10, 2021, at Covenant Presbyterian Church. The funeral service will follow at 2:00 p.m. with Pastor David Kling officiating. Burial will be in Maple Hill Cemetery.
Published by The Huntsville Times from May 6 to May 9, 2021.