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Obituary for Louie Albert Zimmerman

Louie A. Zimmerman, Jr. died May 13, 2017 in Marshall, NC at the age of 93.
He was a lifelong resident of Madison County. His priorities were family, education, work and community. With his life partner Pauline of 67 years, they reared 7 children and sustained large family endeavors with drive, fortitude, and sometimes, with a bit of chaos. He always reminded his children to accomplish more and to do better: “be prepared, diligent, meticulous, resilient, resourceful, flexible, self-reliant, organized, efficient, frugal, plus study and work harder.” He expected his children to: “Do things the right way, be productive, and approach your work enthusiastically.”
He graduated from Laurel High School and received his B.S and M.A. in Math and Science from Western Carolina College. At Duke University, he completed a post-graduate National Science Foundation Fellowship. He credited his wife Pauline for encouraging him to obtain his college education. In reflection he stated marrying Pauline was the best decision he ever made.
Louie had three professions: educator, pipefitter, and farmer which were also adopted by his seven children. Five children completed master’s degrees in education or higher, while one owns a landscaping contracting business and two followed in his footsteps as master welders and farmers.
A veteran science and math teacher, his career lasted 37.5 yrs. including principalships at Spring Creek and Walnut High Schools. As a teacher he was highly respected, with students showing up decades later either to thank him for their success or to apologize for their unruly behavior. In retirement he served two terms on the Madison County Board of Education. He believed being a teacher was the best job one could have and he highly valued his colleagues in education.
His membership in local #487 of Asheville, NC allowed him to work as a pipefitter at various sites including the Savannah River Project, Oak Ridge Laboratories, DuPont and TVA. He especially valued his shared work experiences with the Adams Brothers of Madison County. Farming was something he loved and he was never intimidated by seemingly insurmountable tasks, with growing tobacco, harvesting hay or producing beef cattle. He was a passionate Duke basketball fan. He was a versatile individual who in the 60’s could play checkers with anyone in the back room of the Marshall barbershop, or later in life, bake cookies with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
He was known to stand up for his beliefs regardless of any challenges. Perhaps his greatest hardships were the loss of his wife and his beloved son Billy. His nieces and nephews loved him for his daring adventures such as driving a car faster than anyone they ever knew, and leading family hikes into the Laurel Wilderness.
He was a man of great curiosity, intelligence, knowledge and leadership. He appreciated his good neighbors and community cooperation. His leadership skills and commitment to civic engagement were recognized in the Laurel Community and Madison County. He was President of the Laurel Volunteer Fire Department for several years and served on the board of the Hot Springs Health Program for 40 years. Other civic service included the Madison County AARP, Madison County Chapter of Retired Teacher and the Madison County Planning Board. He also served as an elder in the Presbyterian Church. Dad’s love for Laurel School was forever in his heart. In the end, he was a tall tree falling in the forest.
He was preceded in death by his wife Pauline Ray Zimmerman, son William Paul “Billy” Zimmerman, his parents Rev. Louie Albert Zimmerman, Sr. and Emma Juanita Engle Zimmerman, and siblings Eloise Z. Rogers, Jeanne Z. Kilmer, Jake Zimmerman, John R. Zimmerman, and Lynne Z. McCoy.
He is survived by his children: Kathryn Zimmerman (Herbert Buckner) of Mars Hill, NC, Teresa Z. Engle of Mount Joy, PA, Louie R. Zimmerman (Sandy) of Marshall, NC, Barbara Zimmerman of Marshall, NC, Jacob “Jake” Zimmerman of Brevard, NC, Robert W. Zimmerman, (Erica Curtis) of Marshall, NC; sister Lena Z. Wallin of Roanoke, VA; daughter-in law, Pam Zimmerman of Marshall, NC; sister-in-law’s JoAnn Holland of Maryland and Billie A. Zimmerman of San Antonio, TX; grandchildren: Scott Boone, Amanda B. Rogers, Nate Penland, Lauren Penland, Cassie Z. McGinley, Cody Zimmerman, Caleb Zimmerman, Will Zimmerman, Ben Zimmerman, Ashley Zimmerman, Rachael Zimmerman, Anna Zimmerman, and Jenna Zimmerman; and eight great grandchildren. Additional survivors are step-grandchildren: Stan Engle, Bonnie E. Kampa, Mary E. Kurtz, Les Engle, and David Engle; 13 step great-grandchildren; 8 step great, great-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews; and special friends Hartford Tweed, Leach Shelton, and Fred Gunter.
Visitation will be at Madison Funeral Home: Marshall, NC, Friday, June 16, 4-8PM. A Memorial Service will be held at Marshall Presbyterian Church on Saturday, June 17, at 2:00 pm. Burial will be private at the Zimmerman Family Cemetery at Cedar Cliff Farm.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made in his honor to one of the following: Laurel Volunteer Fire Department, c/o Jan Franklin, Treasurer, 1797 Big Laurel Rd, Marshall, NC 28753; Hot Springs Health Program, 590 Medical Park Drive Marshall, NC 28753 or Marshall Presbyterian Church, 165 Main Street, Marshall, NC 28753.


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Upcoming Events

Visitation

Friday

16

Jun

4:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Madison Funeral Services

1750 Hwy 213
Marshall, NC 28753

Service

Saturday

17

Jun

2:00 PM
Marshall Presbyterian Church

165 S. Main Street
Marshall, NC 28753

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