Allan “AZ” Zimmerli, 90, of rural Redwood Falls died peacefully at his home in Delhi Township Tuesday, July 30, 2013. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, August 2, 2013 from Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Belview. Burial, with military honors, will follow in the Belview Cemetery. Visitation will be held Aug. 1 from 4 until 8 p.m., at Nelson-Martin Funeral Home in Redwood Falls and will continue at the church on Friday for one hour prior to services.
In accordance with Al’s wishes, the family will be donating memorials to the Fisher House, an organization providing a “home away from home” for families of hospitalized veterans. Arrange-ments are with Nelson-Martin Funeral Service of Redwood Falls. E-mail condolences may be sent via www.nelsonmartinfuneralservice.com.
Allan Lee Zimmerli, the son of William and Ella (Georgious) Zimmerli, was born November 20, 1922 in Wabasso. He was baptized and confirmed in the Christian faith and was raised on the family farm in rural Wabasso. Allan attended Wabasso Public School before helping on his family’s farm.
In 1944, he joined the Navy and served as a Seabee in the Philippines. Following his honorable discharge, Allan returned to help on the family farm. In 1952 he purchased his own land near Delhi to farm what many call the “AZ Ranch,” where he resided until his passing.
On November 20, 1962, Allan married Darlene Schmidt, and they raised their five children together. Over the years, he was devoted to raising a variety of livestock along with his crops and his treasured Belgian horses. Allan relished being outdoors riding his six-wheeler, tending to the garden, hunting, and fishing. He was passionate about preserving the land, which is why he donated a number of acres to Delhi Township for a park in remembrance of his son, Glen.
Allan was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and the August Donner American Legion Post 309 in Belview. He loved telling stories and spending time with his children, grandchildren and friends. Allan was known to his loved ones for his generosity, humor, wit, perseverance, and tall tales, among many other things. He had continuously been resilient and positive despite the various tragedies he endured.
Allan is lovingly remembered by his wife Darlene of Delhi; children Cathy Zimmerli of Delhi, Douglas Zimmerli of Tucson, Ariz., Tammy Nichols of Bloomington, Ind., and Joyce (Randy) Panitzke of Redwood Falls. He is also survived by his grandchildren Braxton Eischens, Chris, Megan, Michael, and Shelby Panitzke, and Levi and Paige Nichols; great-grandchildren Ava Ochs/Panitzke, and Riley Robinson; sister Janice Johnson of Ottertail; and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, sister June, brother Floyd, son Glen and grandson Tyler.
Blessed be his memory.