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Zwanziger, Alvin M. 1915-2004


Posted By: MICHAEL F. O'BRIEN (email)
Date: 10/27/2004 at 20:06:05


STRAWBERRY POINT -- Alwin M. Zwanziger, 89, of the Northeast Iowa
Christian Retirement Center, Strawberry Point, died Friday, Aug. 6, 2004, in the
care center from complications of Lymphoma and diabetes. A celebration of life
will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 21, at St. Sebald Lutheran Church,
Strawberry Point, by Pastors Lin Reichstatder and A.L. Hock. The family will
receive friends from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 20, at the Gernand Center, 313
Elkader St., Strawberry Point.

Arrangements by Stewart Funeral Home, Cedar Rapids.
Survivors include a son, Mark (Marilyn) of Strawberry Point; three daughters,
Marie Zwanziger of New York, Kathleen Zwanziger of Columbus, Ohio, and
Christine Faust of Fairfax, Va.; a sister, Esther (Herb) Andreae of Elkader; a
brother, Pastor Otto (Liz) Zwanziger of Cedar Rapids; four grandchildren, Jeremy
(Anne) Hutton, Eric Hutton and friend, Matt, and Summer and Alec Zwanziger.

Alwin was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Ethel, in 1994; a
sister, Hilda; and three brothers, Walter, Ernest and Raymond.

Alwin was born March 6, 1915, in the rural area of Strawberry Point, the
son of Carl and Ida Schmidt Zwanziger. Alwin Ludwig Martin Zwanziger was
baptized on April 11, 1915, by Pastor G.H. Fuehr. He was confirmed in his faith on
Aug. 28, 1927, at St. Sebald Lutheran Church near Strawberry Point, by Pastor
E.L. Melchert.

Alwin spoke German better than he spoke English when he began school at
the Weger School Class No. 4. He was valedictorian of the Strawberry Point High
School, Class of 1931. After a year of working on his father's farm, he took
a one-year course in commerce at Wartburg College in Waverly.

Alwin worked as a carpenter, constructing farm buildings in the vicinity of
St. Sebald, during the depression, until he was appointed substitute rural mail
carrier in 1935. In 1938, he was appointed automobile clerk for Clayton
County, then was promoted to the office of deputy county treasurer. During these
years he continued his close ties to his faith, serving as president of the Iowa
District Luther League and attending various national Luther League

Shortly after Pearl Harbor, Alwin enlisted in the Navy. While in the Navy
and still involved in Luther League, Alwin met Ethel Doescher, who was
working in the national church office of the American Lutheran Church. Her boss, Dr.
Marcus Rieke, officiated at their wedding on Aug. 5, 1944, at Wartburg
Seminary in Dubuque. After his discharge as chief storekeeper from the Navy in 1947,
Alwin and Ethel lived briefly with his parents on the farm, then moved into
the town of Strawberry Point.

Alwin was defeated in his bid for Clayton County Treasurer. Alwin began
duties as a clerk in the Strawberry Point Post Office in 1947. In 1963, he was
appointed postmaster and remained in the position until he retired 20 years

During his years in the post office, he carried on the family tradition
of serving his community. Alwin served as a member of the Strawberry Point
School Board from 1953 to 1960; the last three years he was chairman of the board.
During his tenure, the elementary school addition was completed. He served on
the board of directors of the Strawberry Point Lutheran Home, again during
the time of a building addition. He also helped organize the Strawberry Home, a
non-profit corporation which built senior citizen apartment units.

Perhaps dearest to his heart was a project which began in 1960, with the
selection of a site near Strawberry Point for Camp EWALU, a Bible camp for
Eastern Iowa. For the first nine years Al served as the president of the board.
Besides hiking over several areas to choose a place, Alwin personally arranged
financing for the initial purchase of 280 acres, and in the first year
frequently camped overnight on the property to discourage vandalism. Over the years
Camp EWALU has grown to over 900 acres and serves thousands of people annually.

Even in death Alwin continues to serve -- he donated his body to the
School of Medicine at the University of Iowa, Iowa City.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Camp EWALU, St. Sebald
Lutheran Church, or the Northeast Iowa Christian Retirement Center, all in
Strawberry Point.


Clayton Obituaries maintained by Sharyl Ferrall.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen


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