October 28, 1931 - January 24, 2020
Ronald Z. Zook
Oct. 28, 1931 – Jan. 24, 2020
On Jan. 24, 2020, Ronald Zook passed away peacefully at home. He was born in Ewing, Neb., in 1931, to Howard and Leona Zook. He was the eldest of four siblings. Ron attended Glenvil High School and Hastings College in Nebraska where he lettered in football, basketball and track all four years. He has a track record that still stands in Nebraska. Hastings College is where he met his future wife Marilyn, and they were married for 67 years until his passing.
Ron began his career in education as a teacher and coach in Valparaiso and Chappell, Neb., and then the family moved to Oregon in 1959 where Ron was a teacher and coach in Jefferson, Oregon, he earned his Master of Science degree from Willamette University. In 1965, Ron and the family moved to Astoria, where he worked for Tongue Point Job Corps Center in administration. In Astoria, the family enjoyed many fishing trips on the ocean and the lower Columbia River. In 1967, the family moved to the Eugene area to begin his Doctor degree in Educational Administration. There he became a true Duck fan, where he thoroughly enjoyed going to many games.
In 1969, the family moved to Portland where Ron began a 23 year career in administration for the Parkrose School District. During that time, he served as an Assistant Superintendent and Superintendent of the district until 1994. His focus was always on the learning and welfare of students. He was Oregon Superintendent of the year in 1993. Upon retirement Ron was asked to come to Roseburg as the Interim Superintendent for one year. Ron and Marilyn enjoyed many trips abroad, including ocean and river cruises. Retirement allowed Ron and Marilyn to attend many Duck football and basketball games, both home and away and bowl games.
Ron is survived by his wife, Marilyn; his children, Kevin (Susan), Laurie Ernstrom (Roger), Eric (deceased), Kyle (Jeannie), Kent (Natalie) and Hiroko Shida our other “daughter.” He is also survived by seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
A private family memorial and celebration of life was held at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Portland. Memorial donations may be made to the Shriners Hospital in Portland or to a charity of your choice.
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