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Paul Zumwalt 1912-2004

Paul Zumwalt scattering Jakk Longacre's ashes on August 1, 2002, at Charles Mound, IllinoisPaul Zumwalt, state guidebook author, first winner of the Highpointers Club highest awards — the Vin Hoeman and Jakk Longacre, and definitive Highpointer friend passed on Dec. 20. You can sign condolences on the forum.

Following is the funeral arrangements and obituary information for Paul Zumwalt (provided by his daughter Judy Zumwalt)

Paul Lawrence Zumwalt, 92, long-time Peoria resident, died at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 20, 2004 at the University of New Mexoco Hospital in Albuquerque, NM, of pneumonia. He was born April 4, 1912 in Emden, the eldest son of Edwin and Clara Siuts Zumwalt.

He grew up on the family farm and taught at a country elementary school in his early years. He graduated from the University of Illinois in 1938 as a civil engineer. He married Lila Anna Birky of Hopedale on Oct. 22, 1939. She preceded him in death Feb. 12, 2003 in Peoria.

Mr. Zumwalt worked for the U.S. Geological Survey making topographic maps for five years then enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1944. He was a military governor in Korea then after his discharge settled with his family in Peoria in 1946. He was a city engineer and later worked for Caterpillar Tractor Co. as an engineer.

After retiring in l977, Mr. Zumwalt pursued his love of jogging, running marathons, hiking, backpacking and mountain climbing. He also began his passion for state high points, which began in 1943 in Louisiana, when one of his associate surveyors discovered that Mt. Driskell was the highest point in that state.

Since then he located and attempted to climb highpoints in all 50 states, actually reaching the top in 46 states and coming within 1,500 feet of the summit in two others. He did not attempt Mt. McKinley in Alaska nor Granite Peak in Montana. He has been very active in the Highpointers Club, an organization of people who climb the highest point in each state. In 1997, at age 85, he climbed Colorado’s South Mt. Elbert during the annual Highpointer convention.

He wrote a book, Fifty State Summits, which is a collection of data needed by hikers and climbers who attempt to climb the highest points in each state.

Mr. Zumwalt was elected in l981 to the Hall of Fame by the Illinois Valley Striders, an organization of runners with whom he distinguished himself by winning more than 100 trophies in races. He was a life member of the National Society of Professional Engineers, American Society of Civil Engineers, American Running and Fitness Assn., and the University of Illinois Alumni Assn. as well as a member of University United Methodist Church, the Has Beens Club of Retired Engineers and the Mazamas Mountain Climbing Club in Portland, OR.

He was preceded in death by his parents, wife, and one brother, Donald. Survivors include 4 sons: Glen (Judy), Fountain Green, UT; Dr. Ross (Dr. Cheryl Willman), Albuquerque, N.M.; Wayne (Laura), Colorado Springs, CO; and Dr. Merle (Amy), Battleground, IN; one daughter, Dr. Susan (Dr. John) Gorz, Algoma, WI; and 11 grandchildren; three brothers: Robert (Helen), Emden; Delmar (Martha), Bloomington; and Dean (Alice), Peoria; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 28, 2004 at University United Methodist Church in Peoria, IL. The Rev. Robert Lawry will officiate. Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. on Monday, December 27, 2004 at Davison-Fulton Woodland Chapel in Peoria, IL. Burial will be at Swan Lake Memory Gardens in Peoria, IL.

Memorial contributions may be made to University United Methodist Church in Peoria, IL.

Dick Barthel passes along the following:

For those coming to Peoria for Paul’s visitation and funeral, Welcome to our town. Here’s a simple route with some trail notes:

Recommended Route: From I-74 at the northwest corner of Peoria, take Exit 89, and at the fork in the exit ramp bear right (east) on “War Memorial Drive – US 150 EAST”. At the second stop light with the BP station on the corner, (see Note 1) turn right (south) on University Street and proceed south 0.7 miles to University Methodist Church on your left (east side), at 2818 N University; or 1.3 miles (0.6 more) to the “Davidson-Fulton Funeral Home and Woodland Chapel at Parkview Cemetary” on your right (west side) (driveway on south side of building) at 2021 N. University.

Note 1: At the first stop light on War Memorial Drive, a double right turn onto the frontage road “Meadowbrook Road” will take you to Perkins Restaurant ($) and Cheddars Restaurant ($$), and Super 8, Red Roof Inn, and Comfort Suites Motels. A double left onto the frontage road “Brandywine Drive” will take you to Ned Kelly’s Steakhouse ($$$), Best Western Signature Inn, Sleep Inn, Extended Stay America Suites, and Ramada Brandywine Inn (formerly Holiday Inn Brandywine).

Note 2: On University Street within the first half mile south of War Mem. Dr and the BP station are a small WalMart and several fast food chains on the west side and a couple of local restaurants Childers (American, $), and Khouri’s Lebanese Sandwiches ($) on the east side of University Street.

Note 3: The cemetary is on War Mem. Drive about 4 miles west and north of the University intersection. Expect Class 2 walking on lumpy frozen grass (or recently thawed sod if the sun comes out.) The forcast is for mild December weather.

Alternative route: From I-74 Exit 91 go North on University two half blocks to Funeral Home on the left or 0.8 miles to Church on the right. No facilities on the way.

I would be honored to pick up any highpointer at any of our three airports or two Amtrack stations and provide transportation. Our Airports are Greater Peoria Regional Airport, PIA, 20 minutes from the church, Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington-Normal, BMI, 1 hour 25 minutes from the church, and Mt Hawley Airport, 3MY, 15 minutes from the church. Our closest Amtrack stations are Normal, 70 minutes to the church, and Galesburg, 55 minutes to the church. Peoria Charter Coach offers bus service from OHare and Midway in Chicago to Bradley University on University Street 10 minutes from the church.

Dick Barthel, Peoria IL