Otto Zapecza

Obituary of Otto S. Zapecza

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Otto Stephen Zapecza, 72, died peacefully on May 27, 2023. He was surrounded by his family. Born in Oxford, England he came to the United States on the Queen Mary in 1952, where he then resided in Garfield, New Jersey with his parents. In his younger years, Otto worked at Edelman Brothers Baking Company in Garfield. He graduated from Garfield High School and then went on to attend and graduate from Newark State College (Kean University) with a Bachelor of Science degree. During this time, he was also employed by Ford Motor Company and UPS. After graduation, Otto began his 37-year-long career with the United States Geological Survey (USGS), retiring in 2014 as a Supervisory Hydrologist. He is known for his published papers on water resources in the state of New Jersey, most recognizably the paper titled “Hydrogeologic Framework of the New Jersey Coastal Plain.” Otto was a proud member of The Geological Society of America. Otto is survived by his loving wife of 43 years, Denise (Kelly); his daughter Erika and son-in-law, Kyle; brother Alfred Kovacs (Maria); Sister Veronica Imai, and Sister-in-law, Patricia Hajdok-Fitch; and nieces, nephews, and cousins. He was predeceased by his parents Otto Zapecza and Erika (Kovacs), Stepmother Irene Hajdok-Zapecza, and brother, John Hajdok. Otto loved the outdoors and enjoyed gardening, travel, metal detecting, and fossil collecting. He also enjoyed golfing with his USGS buddies and planning fun and memorable adventures for his family. A Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, June 3, 2023, at 11:00 AM at the Church of Saint Ann located at 1253 Lawrenceville Road, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648. Visitation for Otto will be held on Friday, June 2, 2023, from 4-7 PM at Poulson & Van Hise Funeral Home, 650 Lawrence Road (Route 206), Lawrenceville, NJ 08648. Burial will be held at a later date and the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to The National Park Foundation


4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Friday, June 2, 2023
Poulson & Van Hise Funeral Directors
650 Lawrence Road
Lawrenceville, New Jersey, United States

Memorial Mass

11:00 am - 11:45 am
Saturday, June 3, 2023
Church of St. Ann
1253 Lawrence Road
Lawrenceville, New Jersey, United States
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Otto Zapecza

In Loving Memory

Otto Zapecza

1951 - 2023

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