OAKHAM- Joseph P. Zelnia, 92, a lifelong resident of Oakham, passed away on March 1, 2020 surrounded by his family after a short illness.
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Joseph was born and raised in Oakham, son of the late Walter and Philomenia (Dogul) Zelnia, where he worked for many years on the family dairy farm.
Joseph was a World War ll Veteran serving in the US Marine Corps and later he served in the US Army in 1951.
He leaves his beloved wife of 63 years Anna M. (Savoie) Zelnia; a son Tony Zelnia and his wife Janet of Webster; three daughters Barbara Wilson of Shelburne Falls, Sandra Dixon and her husband Jeffrey and Lisa Zelnia both of Oakham; a sister Frances Gray of Gardner; 5 grandchildren; 12 great grandchildren and many nieces & nephews. He is predeceased by his sister Ethel (Zelnia) Lavoie; a brother Thomas Zelnia and his beloved dog Ginger.
Joe worked for many years at the Barre Wool Combing Co. in Barre where he met his wife Anna. He also worked for the Oakham highway department and for Chas. G. Allen Co. for many years until he retired in 1992.
He was an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots. Joe enjoyed spending time with his family, being outside and his love for animals included walking around the neighborhood giving all of the local dogs a biscuit. He also enjoyed gardening, tending to his house plants, music, summer band concerts and taking his daily rides with his wife.
A memorial Mass for Joseph wil be held on Friday, March 13,2020 at 11:00am in St. Josephs Church 296 Main St. North Brookfield. Friends and family are invited to visit with the family from 10am-10:45am in the church prior to the Mass. Donations may be made in his name to the Second Chance Animal Shelter po box 136 East Brookfield,MA.01515.Pillsbury Funeral Home 44 Gilbert St is assisting the family with arrangements.