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Gerald (Jerry) Raymond Zeller, 87, of Independence, passed away September 15, 2023. Jerry was born on July 2, 1936 at home in Pilot Grove, Missouri to Leo and Martha Zeller. He was an altar boy in grade school and attended Bishop Lillis Catholic High School in Kansas City, Missouri. Jerry was married to Ann Staponski from 1962 to 1966 and they had two children, Sharon and Martin. Jerry was a dedicated father and grandfather. He was a member of St. Mark’s Catholic Church in Independence, Missouri where he attended mass for years. He served in the Korean War and remained in the Army Reserves for 15 years. Jerry worked at Hallmark Cards for 55 years, being the longest tenured employee as a tool finisher in specialty machining. He was instrumental in the development of a camera lens that took 3D images for us on cards. He also crafted the ingots that were presented to each actor in the Hallmark Hall of Fame movies. He placed artwork in the Parade of Cows around Kansas City as part of Hallmark giving back to the community. Jerry helped install playground equipment around the inner city. He was recognized for his sense of teamwork, technical skill and work ethic. Jerry was a scout leader and a sports enthusiast coaching intramural softball, volleyball, and basketball for the Hallmark Corporate Challenge and city leagues for more than 3 decades. He raised money for multiple sclerosis riding in the MS150 for 7 years. Jerry worked in the catering department at Arrowhead during the Chiefs games on Sundays. After retiring at age 71, he began volunteering at the St. Mary’s Church pantry. His accomplishments and works are so numerous to list. He touched every person he met with his kindness and generosity. Jerry is survived by his children, Sharon Cureton and Martin (Gloria) Zeller. He is also survived by his brother, Jack Zeller and sister, Peggy Schallenberg and 14 grandchildren: Janel, Tyler, Nicholas, Rachel, Michelle Mullendore; Samuel and Madison Cureton; Michael Stringfellow, Wendy Enright, James, Kevin, Jerry, Ryan and Jordan Zeller. 18 Great Grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents, Leo and Martha Zeller, granddaughter Jessica Maloney; sisters, Martha Lee Roberts and Patricia Kilgore. A visitation will be held on Wednesday, September 20th at Muehlebach Funeral Care, 6800 Troost, Kansas City, MO, 64131 between the hours of 6 to 8 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Thursday, September 21st at 11:00 a.m. at St. Mark’s Catholic Church, 3736 Lee’s Summit Road, Independence, MO 64055. Jerry will be laid to rest at Mt. Olivet Cemetery following Mass.
Memorials in Jerry's honor may be made to the Sisters of St. Francis of The Holy Eucharist, 2100 North Noland Road, Independence, MO 64050