Robert George Zevnick, Sr. July 7, 1929 - April 8, 2019

Passed away peacefully April 8, 2019, surrounded by those who loved him most. Born July 7, 1929 in a humble home, in Keewatin, MN, to an immigrant father and a young mother, “Bob’s” Iron Range upbringing helped shape his sense of family, community and hard work. Young Bob became the father figure to his siblings, Jean and Charlie, when his father passed away.  With the nurturing love of his fearless mother, Mary, and a host of relatives and friends in the community, Bob graduated from Keewatin High School in 1947. He then attended Hibbing Community College for two years and eventually graduated from St. Cloud State. Starting his career in education, in Grey Eagle, MN, Bob met his wife of 64 years, Alice. Bob and Alice were married in 1954 and shortly after moved to Ogilvie, MN for one year of teaching. After that they moved to Mendota Heights, MN where Bob continued his teaching career, and eventually became the Athletic Director at Henry Sibley High School, from 1968-1985.  Known as “Mr. Z,” he found joy in building relationships with so many of the athletes and his tenure included many championship teams.  Upon retiring from Henry Sibley, Bob remained active as the Executive Secretary of Region 3AA of the MN State High School League, along with serving on the MN State Horse Racing Commission, under his long-time friend, Governor Rudy Perpich.  He especially loved his many years tending the penalty box for the annual MN State High School Hockey Tournament. He was also a long- time board member of the charitable Croatian Hall in South St. Paul. Bob and Alice spent most of their retirement returning to Bob’s roots on the Iron Range, living on the shores of Swan Lake in Pengilly, MN. Bob was an avid outdoorsman who loved spending time with family, deer hunting and walleye fishing, in the Northwoods, at his beloved Owen Lake Lodge. He was an avid sports fan and an accomplished athlete, especially in golf and curling, in his later years.  He loved nothing more than being a regular fixture at his grandchildren’s sporting events. Bob and Alice moved to Edina, in recent years, to be closer to family, where Bob spent time keeping up with the news, reading, and, of course, sharing a good joke with friends and family. Bob’s love and devotion to his family and friends will be missed dearly by all.  Survivors include his wife, Alice; Children:  son, Bob, Jr. (Laura), Scottsdale, AZ; daughters, Teri (Doug) Malam, Minneapolis, and Kathleen (Jim) Brown, South Dakota.  Special daughter-in-law, Lisa (Greg) Oothoudt, Champlin.  Grandchildren: Alison (Matt) Kaylor, Andrea (JD) Swenson, Joe (Jenny) Zevnick, John Zevnick, Jenna Zevnick (fiancé Kevin Markgraf), Cally (Caleb) Hinrichs, and Patrick Brown. Great-granddaughter: Elyza Jean Swenson. Bob is also survived by his brother, Charles “Charlie” Zevnick, Mendota Heights, along with several beloved cousins, nieces and nephews. He is preceded in death by his parents Carl and Mary Zevnick, mother-and father-in-law, Sylvester and Edith Newdall, his sister, Jean Ingebrigtsen, and his beloved son, Jim. Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, April 13, 2019 at Willwerscheid West-Heights Chapel, 235 W Wentworth Ave. West St. Paul, with visitation one hour prior to service.  A luncheon will follow. In lieu of flowers, please honor Bob by making a memorial contribution.

Celebration of Life will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, April 13, 2019 at Willwerscheid West-Heights Chapel, 235 W Wentworth Ave. West St. Paul, with visitation one hour prior to service.  A luncheon will follow.


  1. REPLY
    Deanne Markgraf says

    Jenna – our hearts and prayers are with you during this difficult time. Know that he is now in a special place with your Dad. Love, Steve and Deanne Markgraf

  2. REPLY
    Patricia A. says

    I’m so sorry for the passing of your dear loved one. I know Mr. Robert was an important part of your lives, and you will miss him dearly. 2 Corinthians 1:3,4 says: “Praised be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of tender mercies and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our trials.” May he comfort you through caring friends, warm memories, and moments of peace.

  3. REPLY
    Marilyn Dan says

    “It was good you could see me”, said with a grin. Yes, it was, Bob…always!

  4. REPLY
    Kay Newdall says

    Sorry to hear of Bob’s passing. Sending condolences to all of you. It is always very sad to lose those that we love. My thoughts are with you. God bless. Sincerely, kay

  5. REPLY
    Dale & Jan Madson says

    “Sit in this chair by the fire. What can we get you to drink?” We will really miss the Mayor of Owen Lake. Peace and love, Zevnick family.

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