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Blount & Curry Funeral Home-Carrollwood

3207 W Bearss Ave, Tampa, FL

OBITUARY

Gary Thomas Zinzi

March 10, 1954September 7, 2019
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Gary Thomas Zinzi March 10, 1954 - September 7th, 2019 Gary Zinzi passed away peacefully at James A. Haley VA Hospital after a long, hard fought illness, with his wife Becky by his side. Gary was born in Glen Cove, New York to his parents, Joseph James Zinzi and Dorothy Virginia Heuschneider. Gary and his family moved to Merritt Island, Florida at the time he was starting 7th grade. He grew up in the middle of the Apollo launches at Cape Kennedy Space Center in Florida. This is where he met his future life partner, Rebecca Lynn Ingram at the young age of 13. They did not officially start going steady until starting 10th grade at Merritt Island High. Gary and Becky were then married in 1973. Their only child, Joseph James was born in 1975.

Gary entered the Air Force in November of 1976. Upon completion of basic training, he started on his 22 year journey of service to his country. Gary loved the military. He started out in finance at Luke AFB, moved to San Antonio, Texas at Lackland AFB to become a basic training instructor. From there, he cross trained to become a Law Enforcement Officer and he was transferred to Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Miss. After this assignment, he accepted a special duty assignment to become Chief of Military Studies at the Leadership School at Rhein Main AB in Frankfurt, Germany. His next assignment moved his family back to Florida where he held several different positions. He was able to go back to his love of Law Enforcement and served with the 56th Security Police at MacDill AFB. His other passion was the field of education. Gary was the Commandant of the Professional Military Education Center at MacDill. After leaving MacDill AFB, Gary and Becky moved to Alabama. This is where he had his last assignment as the Superintendent of the USAF Airman Leadership School at Gunter AFB, Alabama. After retiring from the Air Force Gary and Becky moved back to Tampa, Florida. Gary went on to work in various training positions in Tampa. His last position was at Hillsborough Community College. He coordinated the basic law enforcement academies. He loved that position. A perfect combination between law enforcement, education and working with fellow retired military friends. Gary graduated from Faulkner University with a Bachelor’s Degree.

Gary and Becky shared a full life of the things they both loved. Their family, traveling, cooking, and spending time with his son and grandsons were things Gary loved most. Gary loved his grandsons! Great pride was taken in watching them grow up, play sports and just spending time. Gary’s great source of pride was his son Joe. Joe’s success and the person he has become filled him with much gratification and admiration. He was forever thankful to attend many a Bucs tailgate and games with Joe and his friends.

Gary is survived by his wife Rebecca, who lives in Tampa. His son Joseph, his daughter in law Debra, his grandsons Grant and Drew all of Zephyrhills, Florida. His father Joseph Zinzi of Farmingdale, NY. His brothers Glenn and Mitchell, his sister Vickie all of Long Island, NY. He is preceded in death by his mother, Dot and his brother, Joe. Gary has many cousins, brother in laws, sister in laws, nieces and nephews, aunts and uncles and extended family that live in various states.

In lieu of customary remembrances, the family request with gratitude that memorial contributions in his name be directed to James A Haley VA Hospital designated for the Hospice Unit. For additional information contact the VA Hospital at 813-972-2000.

A Celebration of Life will take place at 7:00pm on Thursday, September 19, 2019 at Blount & Curry Funeral Home Carrollwood Chapel, 3207 West Bearss Ave. Tampa, FL. 33618. Family will receive friends one hour prior. Military Honors will be rendered at 10:30am on Friday, September 20, 2019 at Florida National Cemetery, Bushnell, FL.

Services

19 September

Visitation

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Blount & Curry FH-Carrollwood

3207 W BEARSS AVE
TAMPA, FL 33618

19 September

Clebration of Life

7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Blount & Curry FH-Carrollwood

3207 W BEARSS AVE
TAMPA, FL 33618

20 September

Military Honors

10:30 am - 11:00 am

Florida National Cemetery

6502 S. W. 102nd Ave
Bushnell, FL 33513

Memories

Gary Thomas Zinzi

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Dorne Albright

September 13, 2019

Rest In Peace my friend.

Dave Donatelli

September 11, 2019

It was my honor to serve with Gary from 1990-93. He was a first-class NCO and an even better person. He was an integral part of the 56 SPS and our success was due in no small part to his leadership, integrity and dedication. We'll miss him! RIP, brother ...

Herb Soto

September 11, 2019

RIP

Jim Middleton

September 10, 2019

Gary was one-of-a-kind. He set the standard the rest of us tried to live up to. My life is better for having known him even if it was only for a short while.

Kent Bunch

September 10, 2019

Gary and I served together at Rhein-Main Air Base, Germany, from 1984-1987, as U.S. Air Force Noncommissioned Officer Leadership School (NCOLS) instructors, and remained life-long friends after retirement from the Air Force. Gary was charismatic, a leader and a professional who inspired others to achieve more of themselves. A dedicated husband, father and friend, I will always treasure our memories, friendship and honor his selfless service to our nation.

Nick Vinterella

September 9, 2019

I remember Gary from my days at Keesler as well. One of the sharpest and coolest guys I ever met.

James Tilley

September 9, 2019

Gary and I worked together in the early 80’s at Kessler AFB, MS. He was a great mentor to me teaching me skills that I carried through my 36 years in law enforcement. A great man and American!

Tim Hall

September 8, 2019

I knew Gary as a very competent U.S. Air Force Security Policeman in the 1980s. I have fond memories of his service and his witty personality.

May God bless his soul and his wonderful supportive family.

Colonel Tim Hall
US Air Force ret.

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