In loving memory of
Joseph (Joe) A. Zambrano
  • December 22, 1934
  • -
  • July 16, 2020

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Obituary

The Final Game
He didn’t sign up for this game, would rather not have played, which is odd for a sports loving man as he.
More than ten years he played, using every trick in the book,
yet the rules kept on changing, no umpire’s handbook.
Team Z was assembled, they rallied around,
Friends and family, the neighbors abound.
The doctors and nurses gave it their all, in the end loving caretakers surrounded us all.
Papa Joe whispered softly I’m ready to leave this physical life,
please be sure to take care of my wife.
So this inning has closed on my dear daddy’s game, no more appointments or therapies, medicine to take.
So to Parkinson’s I say, you may think you have won,
But my dad is the true winner, He will never be gone.
For his spirit will live on.

Our Warrior
Our Father… How to condense everything he represented into a few paragraphs is impossible, painful, yet such an honor. Discussing this with my siblings, we agreed that while he accomplished incredible things on his resume, those were simply the tip of the iceberg of a live well lived.

Joseph A. Zambrano, known as “Joe Z” was born in Saginaw, Michigan, December 22, 1934. He always recognized the value of education and chose to work his way through St. Andrews Catholic High school. After graduation, he joined the Marine Corps and served during the Korean war. The GI bill paid for his college education at Michigan State, where he bowled for the big 10 team. Professionally, he had a remarkable career and was the perfect example of a man born to serve. He worked for the government in one form or another for most of his career. He served on the Civil Rights Commission, bailed out failing Savings and Loans, was the Personnel Director for the Office of Personnel Management, and served on President Clinton’s Small Business development council. When he retired from government service, he founded Capital Consulting Corporation, an 8(a) small business.

His career never defined him, though. His family defined him. He is survived by 5 children who loved and respected him; 7 grandchildren who adored him, and a loving wife of 57 years, Judy, who misses him every day.

To say our father was a good man, is an understatement. He coached all 5 of us in every sport we had a passion for to include soccer, baseball, swimming, and hockey. He touched the lives of many kids along the way and valued every single one regardless of talent. He taught that winning was not everything but giving 100% every time was. He had an honor code that was intrinsic to his nature. His character was what we should all aspire to be as he always stood up for what he believed in, and never faltered in his ideals.

That said, Joe Zambrano always had a twinkle in his eye, and a wicked sense of humor. He was the life of every party and there are stories of his exploits as a young marine stationed in Japan that we were never allowed to hear. Our parents were known to tear up a dance floor. For a man who was 5’7, 150 lbs. soaking wet, with coke bottle glasses – he had moves.

For the last 12 years of his life, he valiantly battled Parkinson’s disease which was service connected to his time spent at Camp Lejeune. He beat skin cancer (Melanoma), prostate cancer, and survived his open-heart surgery at age 81. He inspired everyone he came across with his determination to persevere against the odds. He passed away the evening of July 16, 2020, from Parkinson’s disease, with his trademark courage, composure, and grace, surrounded by his loved ones, at home and in his own bed.

The world is less without him here, even if we are all more for having known him. He made the world a brighter, happier, more honorable place for those lucky enough to be in his orbit. As a neighbor wrote in a condolence card “Joe Z was sunshine.” Our lives have been changed by his presence and made better by his love. He will be missed. Semper Fi Dad, Semper Fi.

For anyone wishing to donate in his honor, we suggest Wounded Warriors, for he was just that, a Warrior.

Obituary

Joseph (Joe) A. Zambrano, age 85, died of Parkinson’s Disease on July 16, 2020. He was at home under the care of Hospice, with his wife and family in The Villages, FL. He was born in Saginaw, Michigan on December 22, 1934 to parents Jose and Carmen (Flores) Zambrano.
He proudly graduated From St. Andrews High School in 1953, joined the Marine Corps during the Korean War (Semper Fi), and graduated from Michigan State University with BS degree in Political Science. He was proud to be on the MSU bowling team with a 190-average taking on the big 10 teams.
Professionally, Joe had a remarkable career and was the perfect example of a man born to serve with his beliefs in high ethics and honesty. His personnel management career began with DAC, Tank Arsenal, Warren, MI, followed with Picatinny Arsenal in NJ, and the Pentagon, Washington, DC. He continued with OPM, Personnel Director of the Civil Rights Commission, served on President Clinton’s Small Business development council until he retired from his Federal career. He then continued personnel management with the team assisting to bail out failing S&L problems. Joe followed this with CEO, Capital Consulting Corporation.
Joe is survived by his loving wife of 57 years Judith (Nyman) Zambrano. He was a loving husband and family man. The Father of five wonderful children: Eric Zambrano, Lisa Zambrano, Mary Zambrano, Joseph (Joey) Zambrano, Karyn Clifton. He adored his 7 grandchildren: Duke Culbertson, Tynna Pfeiffer, Jayden & Jaxson Zambrano and Joseph, Thomas and Colter Clifton.
To say Joe was a good man is an understatement. He was very athletic and played or participated in too many sports to list. He coached all his children in any sport they had a passion to do. He coached and refereed soccer and swimming to mention a couple. He touched many young lives along the way and valued every single one regardless of talent. He taught that winning was not everything but giving 100% every time was. He had an honor code that was intrinsic to his nature. His character was what we all should aspire to be as he always stood up for what he believed in, and never faltered in his ideals.
That said, Joe Zambrano always had a twinkle in his eye, and a wicked sense of humor. He was the life of the party. However, there are stories of his exploits as a young Marine stationed in Japan neither his wife nor children were never allowed to hear.
For the past 12 years of his life, he valiantly battled Parkinson’s disease which was service connected to his time served at Camp Lejeune. He beat skin cancer (Melanoma), prostate cancer, and survived open heart surgery at 81. He inspired everyone he came across with his determination to persevere against the odds. He passed away with his trademark courage, composure, and grace, surrounded by his loved ones and in his own bed.
The world is less without Joe here, even if we are more for having known him. He made the world a brighter, happier, more honorable place for those lucky enough to be in his orbit. Our lives have been changed by presence and made better by his love. He will be missed. Semper Fi, My Love, Semper Fi.
Due to the current COVID pandemic, health precautions, and logistics of family from out of town, we will not have a celebration of life at this time. Joe wished to have his remains buried in Clifton. VA. Please stay safe and continue to follow CDC guidelines during this time of peril. For anyone wishing to donate in Joe’s honor, we suggest Wounded Warriors, Paralyzed Veterans, Cancer Foundation or Parkinson’s Foundation.


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  1. 18 Aug 2020
    Bob Schmid says:
    I worked with Joe at the FSLIC in the 1980s. He was smart, professional, innovative, and he had a great sense of humor. A true public servant. I feel fortunate to have known him and to have this opportunity to express my condolences to his family.

  2. 18 Aug 2020
    mary zambrano posted an image:
    Granddaughter Tynna with Poppa Joe, March 2020
    Granddaughter Tynna with Poppa Joe, March 2020

  3. 17 Aug 2020
    Saundra M. Bromberg says:
    Joe Zambrano always greeted all of us at Capital with a warm smile! May his memory be a blessing to his entire family. My condolences to his wife, children and grandchildren. Sincerely, Saundra M. (Greenberg) Bromberg

  4. 16 Aug 2020
    Charlie Brennan says:
    Joe and I first met when I went to work for Capital Consulting in early 1997. He was one of those kind of people who always had a simile and something upbeat to say. Someone you want to have in your group of friends. In addition to work, we played a lot of golf over the years with a group of friends. We also were in a group that pitted our betting skills against each other in March madness pools. Joe’s upbeat personality made every occasion more enjoyable. Job well done, Joe. Rest in peace.

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