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John E. Zahler
December 16, 1944 ~ August 8, 2023 (age 78) 78 Years Old
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Dedicated family man, proud veteran, and cherished friend
John Zahler, age 78, passed away peacefully at his home on August 8, 2023 surrounded in love by his family. He fought COPD and two bouts of cancer before he surrendered his soul to God and joined his angel in heaven, Patty.
John grew up in Rogers and graduated from St. Michael Catholic School. Shortly after, he joined the US Navy, served 3 years, 3 months, and 18 days (which he reminded us often), then married the love of his life, Patty, in 1966. They raised their family in Rogers until 2006, then moved to Elk River.
He lived a full life dedicated to hard work and family and was a proud veteran, serving in the Seabees construction battalion of the US Navy. John was a committed member of the bricklayers union for more than 50 years, working in the pre-cast concrete industry. He was a dedicated employee, working for Spancrete for seven years, and Molin Concrete for 34 years. After retiring as a foreman, he continued to work as a project manager at Molin until 2009.
John was all about enjoying life's simple pleasures with family and friends. Whether it was playing pool, fishing, softball, bowling, or cheering on his favorite teams, he knew how to have a good time. We’ll miss talking politics and listening to / watching classic country and bluegrass music with him!
Throughout his illnesses, he made it to church on Sunday and Wednesday morning breakfast as long as he was able. One of his last wishes was to let the guys know how thankful he was for their friendship. And we’re sure he’s telling everyone in heaven about his recent family reunion and celebration of life!
John is survived by his children Tim, Deb (Paul) Long, Jodi (Scott) Stammer; four treasured grandchildren, AJ Teague, Katie Teague, Ashley Ogelsby, and Myranda (Patrick) Hanson; three great grandchildren, Josie, Penny and Maverick; and sister, Grace. He looked forward to reuniting in heaven with many friends and family members, especially his wife, Patty; parents, Isadore and Clara Zahler; two brothers (David and Allan) and four sisters (JoAnn, Betty, Mary, and Colleen).
We would like to thank all who called and visited John — with a special nod to his nurses and aides from Allina and Brighton Hospice. Your care, compassion, and your genuine affection meant the world to him — and to us.
Mass of Christian burial at 11:00 AM on Thursday, August 17, 2023 at the Church of St Andrew, 566-4th Street, Elk River, with visitation starting at 10:00 AM. Private interment at St. Andrew Cemetery. Visitation also on Wednesday, August 16 from 5:00 - 8:00 PM, with parish prayer at 6:00 PM at Dare’s Funeral Home, 805 Main Street, Elk River.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Saint Andrew Catholic School (428 Irving Ave, Elk River, MN 55330) or Mary Queen of Peace Catholic School (21201 Church Ave, Rogers, MN 55374).