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Arthur H. Zwierlein

August 16, 1921 ~ September 14, 2023 (age 102) 102 Years Old

Arthur Zwierlein Obituary

Arthur H. “Bud” Zwierlein, Jr., WWII veteran, age 102, of Glen Ellyn, Illinois passed on to his heavenly home September 14, 2023. He is survived by his loving wife, Margot Cooper Zwierlein (nee Morrow), 3 of his children: Victor (Karen) of Grand Prairie TX, Heidi McAndrew (Mark) of Wheaton, IL and Lisa Sowa (Tony) of River Falls, WI; 2 of Margot’s children: Julie Goldberger of Newbury Park, CA, and Brett (Julie) of Ingleside, IL; 7 grandchildren of his, 6 of Margot’s; his 17 great-grandchildren, several generations of his dearly beloved nieces and nephews; and he was predeceased by his first loving wife Donna Fullerton Zwierlein.

Bud was born at home in Lakewood, Ohio in 1921 to Arthur Zwierlein, a Cleveland shoe store owner, and to Helen Boehmke Zwierlein, a home economist, both first generation German-Americans. He had 2 older sisters, Katherine (Kay) and Paula (Polly). Eternal optimists, his family, each one with a great sense of humor, made it through the Great Depression enjoying the outdoors year around. Bud’s recreation would include horseshoes, marbles, schoolyard ball, picnics, bow hunting, fishing, skating, bike riding and general mischief. He spent some memorable summers as a youth in Valley City, Ohio lending a hand on his uncle’s farm, and in Berlin, Germany in 1937 with his sister Polly, as an exchange student.

Bud sold newspapers throughout his years at Horace Mann Jr. High and Lakewood High School (’39) where he loved track, especially the field sports. Then at DePauw University, he joined the brotherhood of Delta Tau Delta fraternity. Interrupting his college years, but being the patriot he was, Bud joined the United States Navy. He was commissioned and chose to skipper a high-speed aircraft rescue “crash boat” because "who wouldn’t want to?” He was deployed to the Philippines where he saw action in the Battle of Leyte Gulf (Oct. ’44). After the war, he graduated from DePauw (’47), became a lumber business salesman, and in 1950 married Donna Fullerton- also from Lakewood- so they settled there. After Bud recovered from a broken leg from a snow skiing accident on their honeymoon, they became active members of a local dance club, had 3 children, and enjoyed the YMCA for swim, camps and Indian Guides. Among many memorable vacations, to soak in Americana and to visit the Fullerton family, in 1958, they drove historic Route 66 in a station wagon lacking A/C from Lakewood to California, making subsequent trips by other means. They shared epic Sunday morning picnics with the extended Zwierlein family at Clifton Beach, vacationed in a lakefront cottage on Higgins Lake MI for 40+ years, Bud taught the whole family to love skiing, and much, much more.

In 1964, Bud, Donna and family moved to Glen Ellyn, IL. Together they helped plant and found St. Thomas Methodist Church, and for decades they continuously served faithfully in many capacities. After sending all 3 of their kids to the U. of Illinois, they enjoyed retirement, but only for a few years before Donna passed on in 1992.

A year later, their St. Thomas pastor and wife, Bob and Faith McWilliams, suggested Bud ask Margot Cooper on a date. They were married in 1994, shared their devotion to St. Thomas, their friends and neighbors and enjoyed much travel. To the depths of his soul, Bud loved the outdoors, adventures and sports of all kinds. So, as spectators, the two were fixtures in the high school grandstands, ball parks and bleachers, especially when their grandsons were playing ball. As a participant, Bud loved skiing, golf and tennis, making great friends along the way. Well into his 90’s Bud enjoyed the friendships he nurtured in the 70+ and 80+ Ski Clubs, the Village Links and Valley View Golf Leagues, and HealthTrack tennis league (where, legend says, being the first member to join, Bud was offered permanent locker #1. He and Margot worked out there daily). Bud transported food from grocery stores to the Glen Ellyn Food Pantry, and with Margot lovingly delivered Meals-On-Wheels “to old people”. When a bike incident rendered him unable to navigate stairs any more, they moved to Brookdale Glen Ellyn. There he connected and reconnected with friends old and new through activities, trips, events, and life in general, all the while being very fond of its loving staff, and deeply grateful for the special attention given to them there.

For all these reasons listed above, and more that make Arthur H. Zwierlein, Jr. the Bud we loved, he was surprised and delighted to be selected as a torchbearer for the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics. His segment to run was in Winnetka, IL where he was humbled and honored to be cheered on by dozens of dear friends and family members. 

Bud was blessed with his faith and surrounded with those he loved. He worked hard and gave generously of himself.

In the past few years, Bud was asked numerous times what his secret was to long life. He had two: “Don’t ever stop” and “Love.” We won’t ever stop loving you, Bud.

See you in Heaven...

Celebration of life is to be held Monday, October 16 at the First United Methodist Church of Glen Ellyn, 424 Forest Ave, Glen Ellyn, IL, 60137. The family would be delighted to visit with you in the sanctuary previous to the 11:00 memorial service.

OPTIONAL: Golf attire is joyfully encouraged.

Friends and family are invited to bring your favorite putter and driver, practice some putting, and "hit a range bucket on Bud" during lunch.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the B. R. Ryall YMCA, online at or via mail, 49 Deicke Drive, Glen Ellyn, IL 60137, in the memory of Arthur H. Zwierlein. 

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Celebration of Life
October 16, 2023

11:00 AM
First United Methodist Church of Glen Ellyn (Forest Avenue)


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