Gene Zema: September 2, 1926 – October 9, 2021

Gene zema obituary photo

Renowned Northwest architect, Gene Zema, passed away at the age of 95 at his home on Whidbey Island on October 9. For more than 40 years he set his iconic style on the Pacific Northwest in residential, professional, and retail spaces, as well as Gould Hall at the University of Washington (with friend and colleague, Dan Streissguth). A connoisseur of beautiful things, he designed, collected, built, arranged, created, tasted and traveled the world with intellectual curiosity, artistic boldness and unmatched energy.

Gene was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Janet, in 2018. He will be greatly missed by his son Gary Zema, daughter Jane Summerfelt (Todd) and the five grandchildren he so cherished: Daniel Summerfelt, Ellen Summerfelt (Nick Scott-Blakely), Janet Summerfelt (Festus Shaughnessy), Evan Zema and Maggie Zema and great-grandson, Simon Shaughnessy, as well as many family and friends in Seattle and Whidbey Island.

A celebration of his life will be held when it is safe to do so. Gifts in his honor may be made to Whidbey Hospice at whidbeyhealth.org/ foundation, who helped to make his transition a peaceful one.

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