Ronald Zech, 70, El Cajon, California
The Zech family is mourning the loss of Ronald Gerald Zech, 70, of El Cajon, California, formerly of Baraboo.
While building his retirement dream home in the mountains near El Cajon, California, he suffered an acute pancreatitis attack and passed away in the hospital a few weeks later on Monday, March 25, 2019, with his wife Sunny by his side.
He was born to his Sumpter farm parents, Clarence and Dorothy Hein Zech, on Jan. 28, 1949, in Baraboo, and was a hard worker all his life on farms, at the Premo gas station, on paper routes, and at the quartzite quarry.
He liked to ski at Birch Haven, skate on Devil’s Lake and to bow hunt deer back up in the woods.
Like his dad, he loved to rebuild motorcycles. Once he fired up an old Zundapp without the muffler and all the neighbors of their brick home on Fifth Street would know the Zech boys were at it again.
In high school, Ron competed in cross country, tennis, volleyball and played trumpet in the band.
After graduating in 1967, he went to Stout State then drove out to Colorado and became a ski instructor at Eldora Resort where he slept in an old panel truck he converted.
After graduating from the University of Denver with an engineering degree he served in the Peace Corps for three years in Kenya, Africa teaching shop and building a large sailboat his students loved to sail on Lake Victoria.
He held engineering positions at AMF Head, Ektelon, Easton Sports and DonJoy in Boulder, Colorado, where he designed tennis rackets, stringing machines, hockey sticks, golf clubs, and prosthetic equipment.
He moved to Lyons, Colorado, and hand laid a huge stone wall around his mountain home and prospected for gold, giving away gold nuggets to his family.
He moved to EL Cajon, California, and saved their home from a raging fire storm one hot summer.
He started Zech Tech and designed quiet jet engines, car racing seats and airplane wings.
Preceded in death by his parents.
Survived by his loving wife of 30 years, Sunny (Sun Hui); and his five brothers and three sisters, Shirley (Bill) Brown, Dennis (Barb), Leonard, Steven, Marvin, Brenda Pearson, Janice (Dan), Anthony (Cami); and numerous nieces and nephews, Brad, Michael (Kristin), Tyler, Briana (Nick), Stephanie, Jordan, Justin, Joseph, Julie, Jedric, Ethan; and many other relatives and friends.
Services by Merkley-Mitchell Mortuary of San Diego, California.
His ashes will be spread in the mountains he loved.