Zipperer remembered for his commitment to Door County

Former Door County Board Chair Leo Zipperer, who died last Monday in Florida, is being remembered for his impact on local politics.  Current Door County Board member Dan Austad, who served with Zipperer for many years, recalls two major projects that Zipperer was instrumental in getting done. 


Zipperer, 77, also served as the Sevastopol town chair for 20 years before stepping down in 2017.  According to his obituary, he served as a state patrol officer with the Wisconsin State Patrol for over 33 years, retiring in 1993.  Funeral services for Leo Zipperer will be held this Saturday.  You can find the complete obituary below.



 by Huehns Funeral Home

 “Welcome to beautiful Door County in wonderful Wisconsin!” Those were the words that greeted friends and family and were added to the many county and town board resolutions that Leo thrived on creating for the future and “betterment” of the place he called home: DOOR COUNTY, WI.

     Leo Walter Zipperer, 77, of the Town of Sevastopol, WI, and also of Palmetto, FL, passed away at his home in Florida on Monday, February 4, 2019 with his family at his side.

     “Zip” was born February 18, 1941 in Whitelaw, WI, the son of Walter Anton Zipperer and Mary (Reiderer) Zipperer. Leo graduated from Lincoln High School in Manitowoc, WI in 1959. He went on to join the Manitowoc Sheriff’s Department before entering the State Patrol Academy.

     Leo served as a state patrol officer with the Wisconsin State Patrol for over 33 years and retired in 1993.

     On August 19, 1975, he married Margi Overbeck Stafford. They shared over 43 years of happiness together.

     In his retirement, Leo continued serving his community as a member of the Door County Board of Supervisors for 28 years (first elected in 1974) with three terms as Chairman and oversaw such projects as the construction of the Justice Center and the remodeling of Government Center. As a resident of the Town of Sevastopol, he served on the Town Board as Chairman for over 20 years and oversaw the Town Park and Town Hall projects. Leo also served as President of Bayside Cemetery Association for many years and during that time, helped plan the construction of the columbariums and the remodeling of the chapel. The running “joke” at Bayside was, “The only way a person could ‘retire’ from the presidency was to live there full-time.”

     In all of these offices, Leo was described as someone who always informed himself about the issues, listened to others, and was a good friend. Zip operated with a kind heart, fully-engaged and was the consummate professional in all the endeavors that he undertook.

     He had a passion for lawn maintenance and home improvement and even raked in his "free time." He actually “invented” a rake to simplify the job. Leo was a hard worker, but also knew how to have a good time. His family remembers him for being calm and level-headed. And yes, always loaded with advice.

     Leo will be missed by his wife, Margi; children,  Kathy (Steve) Zipperer of Deforest, WI, Shannon (Yuzhen) Stafford of Indianola, IA and Steffanie (Chris Olson) Stafford of Sturgeon Bay, WI, and Gregory (Britt) of Door County, WI; grandchildren, Sophia Stafford, Quinn Stafford, and Tony Hu; sister, Margaret Mueller of Rice Lake, WI; siblings-in-law, Barbra Zipperer and Gretchen Zipperer, Bill (June) Overbeck, Chuck (Kathy) Overbeck, Little Bit LeClair, Jennifer (Steve) Baudhuin, and Karin Overbeck; stepmother-in-law, Betty Overbeck and many wonderful, “fantastical” and talented nieces and nephews; other amazing relatives; and friends. And the Slammer!

     He was preceded in death by his parents and stepfather, Edward Remiker; brothers, Donald, Gerald, and Allen Zipperer and stepbrother, Norbert Remiker; and brothers-in-law, Loyal Mueller, Philip Overbeck, and Michael Overbeck; also preceded by parents-in-law, Thea Jay “Tiz Peterson and Fred J. Peterson and Henry W. Overbeck.

     Leo’s final “meet and greet” will be as follows: 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. on Friday, February 15, 2019 at Huehns Funeral Home, 1414 Michigan St., Sturgeon Bay, WI 54235 and also on Saturday, February 16, 2019 from 9:30 a.m. until 10:45 a.m. His funeral service will be held at the funeral home on Saturday at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. Mark Richards officiating.

     Leo will be laid to rest in Bayside Cemetery.

     If you wish to make a memorial, please consider Bayside Cemetery or the Sevastopol Town Hall and Park.

     “Our family would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to the staff of Tidewell Hospice for their care given to Leo and especially to his nephew, Aaron LeClair, daughter, Steffanie Stafford, and the family and staff at Huehns Funeral Home for their care this past week and helping to bring Leo home.”

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