Mr. James Albert Zeller, age 86, passed away Saturday, July 3, 2021. He was born in Muskegon, MI on April 18, 1935 to James & Ruth (Vogel) Zeller and was surrounded by loving aunts and cousins growing up. He was raised in the church where his mother played the piano and he found his passion for music as he accompanied her on the trumpet. This led to him later playing in school bands, and eventually semi-professionally in dance bands throughout the west coast of MI. He attended MSU and forged lifelong friendships with his brothers in the Sigma Chi fraternity.
Every day was a glorious adventure for Jim from living in Paris after high school, fishing the waters off the Montauk coast to guiding elk hunting trips in Montana. Even going to the grocery store with him proved to be an escapade in fun. In his later years, he honed his wood working and restoration skills and created beautiful gardens around his little farmhouse.
But wherever he was, Muskegon was always his home. He spent much of his youth roaming the woods, studying plants and taking care of animals. He could be found on the small waters around town on one of his Chris Crafts, and on the big water fishing for salmon. In the Fall, he could be found in the marshes duck hunting; his opening day parties were legendary. His love and compassion for people, nature and animals has been passed down through his family.
He will be remembered for his marvelous sense of humor and will be regaling the angels with tall tales, jokes, and his warm, welcoming hugs. He will be dearly missed by everyone whose lives he touched. Most especially by his family: two daughters, Jill Zeller of Clawson & Julie (Craig) Hoensheid of Rochester Hills; grandchildren, Kyle Hamm, Jillian (Patrick) Sugrue, Cameron Hoensheid & Jack Hoensheid. He was preceded in death by his parents and wife, Nancy.
According to his wishes there will be no services. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his honor to Muskegon Museum of Art where he spent many peaceful hours enthralled with their beautiful works. Please visit www.clockfuneralhome.com to leave a memory or sign the online guestbook.
Clock Funeral Home - Muskegon
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