Randolph Paul Zimmer
June 14, 1928 – June 8, 2019
Cpl Randolph Paul Zimmer, US Army Signal Corp. (retired) passed away June 8, 2019 peacefully at home in Mercer, Maine, surrounded by his loving children. He was born June 14, 1928 in New York City to Henrika Nitsch Zimmer and Paul Zimmer. His life as a child in Queens, NY, where he attended the Brooklyn German Church, was that of a typical child in New York. During high school he simultaneously attended public school and an Aviation High School, completing both with high honors. Immediately upon graduation, he was offered a job by American Airlines whereby he would have had to relocate to France, or more exotic places such as Madagascar. As he didn’t care for the offered options, he decided to attend Atlantic Union College in South Lancaster, Massachusetts where he majored in physics and met his bride, Carolyn Gifford. Later in life, through the Rutgers extension, he attended the University of Pennsylvania where he worked on his master’s in electrical engineering.
Randy and Carolyn were married in 1951, started their family in 1952, bought a house in Red Bank, New Jersey in 1955 and there raised their four children, Patricia, Steven, Lawrence and Cynthia. He instilled his love of Jesus, learning, camping and the outdoors in his children and would often take his family on camping trips and Sabbath hikes. In 1977, Randy and Carolyn purchased property in Mercer, Maine where Randy cut and milled trees from their property, then designed and built their retirement home. Upon its completion in 1985 they packed the contents of their New Jersey house and moved to Maine where they embarked on their dreams of an organic berry farm. As if farming wasn’t enough, he decided to teach computers at the University of Maine, Farmington.
Within a month of his marriage, Randy began his military career. His eight years in the army were divided between Fort Meade, Maryland and Fort Monmouth, New Jersey where he rose to the rank of Corporal. He was honorably discharged in 1959. While in the Army, he worked in the signal corps and after discharge was asked to stay on and work for the government as a civilian. He liked the work and continued with it until he retired in 1984. During his career at Fort Monmouth he received numerous awards for his work on classified projects and was quickly promoted to the elite title of General Engineer, which made him responsible for a variety of classified projects and the numerous workers on those projects. Randy became known as the person who could solve problems others couldn’t. Even NASA would send complicated issues to Randy, knowing he would find a solution.
Throughout his life, Randy relaxed through a variety of methods, such as bible study, camping, carpentry, computers and automobile repair. As a life-long learner, he taught himself Greek and Hebrew so he could study the Bible in its native language. Randy was always very passionate about his love for God and family. As a huge champion of church school education, he volunteered to teach robotics at Riverview Memorial School in Norridgewock, Maine. He was always willing to help others as exhibited by his volunteer work at church, church school and with numerous families in the area. He has always been steadfast in his unselfishness and his willingness to share his love for Jesus with those around him. His generosity has touched many lives.
He was predeceased by his parents, Henrika Nitsch and Paul Zimmer and his loving wife, Carolyn Elaine Gifford. He is survived by his four children: Patricia Wecht (Zimmer) of Florham Park, New Jersey; Steven Zimmer of Seaford, Delaware; Lawrence Zimmer of Frederick, Maryland; Cynthia Stout (Zimmer) of Glenelg, Maryland and his sister, Eleanor Ochab (Zimmer) of Mobile, Alabama.
Family and friends may visit Friday, June 14 from 6-8 p.m. at Smart & Edwards Funeral Home, 183 Madison Avenue, Skowhegan. Interment with military honors will be Saturday, June 15 at the Friends Meeting House Cemetery, Fairfield, starting at 3 p.m. followed by a celebration of Randy’s life at his home in Mercer, Maine.
- He is survived by his four children: Patricia Wecht (Zimmer) of Florham Park, New Jersey; Steven Zimmer of Seaford, Delaware; Lawrence Zimmer of Frederick, Maryland; Cynthia Stout (Zimmer) of Glenelg, Maryland and his sister, Eleanor Ochab (Zimmer) of Mobile, Alabama.He was predeceased by his parents, Henrika Nitsch and Paul Zimmer and his loving wife, Carolyn Elaine Gifford
- Visiting Hours Friday, June 14, 2019
- Graveside Service Saturday, June 15, 2019
- Memorial Service Saturday, June 15, 2019