George James Ziarnik 75, of Tucson, died on December 28, 2006. Born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on April 9, 1931, he grew up in Manitowoc, Wisconsin. As a young man, he served as a sergeant in the Korean War and received the "Commendation Ribbon with Medal Pendant" for meritorious service from 1953-54. He and his wife Arleen were married in 1956. In 1957 George graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. After graduation, George and Arleen moved to New Jersey where he began a long and successful career as a research chemist for Esso (now Exxon), specializing in the development of synthetic rubber for industrial applications. During his career, George and his family spent four years in England and Belgium while he helped establish a new Exxon research facility in Brussels. In addition to his career as a chemist, George was committed to helping the homeless and was involved in many church activities, including canoe trips with church members and his sons. George retired as a Senior Research Associate in 1992, at which time he and Arleen moved to Tucson, Arizona, where he enjoyed hiking in Sabino Canyon and spending time with his family and grandchildren. George was a loving husband and father. All who knew him will miss his quiet, compassionate and kind nature as well as his sentimental heart. Whenever waltz or polka music was played, he spontaneously began dancing, inviting Arleen to join him. He is sorely missed. George was preceded in death by his father, Theodore Ziarnik, and his mother, Alice (Letkiewicz) Ziarnik, his sister Betty and his brother Robert. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Arleen (Jenkins) Ziarnik, of Tucson, and three sons and their families: Mark, of Hartland, Connecticut, his wife Penelope, and their sons Abram and Stuart; William of Tucson, Arizona, and his daughters Victoria, Olivia, and Eleanor; and Andrew, of Barrington, Illinois, his wife Natalie, and their son Zachary. A memorial service will take place at Tanque Verde Lutheran Church on Sunday, February 25th at 2:00 pm presided over by Pastor Sondra Krogstad and Father Harry Ledwith of St. Pius X. A second memorial service will occur in the summer of 2007 in Dalton, Wisconsin. The family would like to express special thanks to the staff of ACL Adult Care Home and the Tucson Medical Center hospice service. In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to the George J. Ziarnik Scholarship Fund at the University of Wisconsin Foundation, 1848 University Ave., P. O. Box 8860, Madison, WI 53708-8860. Arrangements by DESERT SUNSET FUNERAL HOME.
Published by Arizona Daily Star on Feb. 1, 2007.