Jesuit Father Eugene A. Zimpfer died on Jan. 9, 2015 at the Jesuit infirmary, Murray-Weigel Hall, Bronx, New York. He was a Jesuit for 60 years and a priest for 49 years. Age 82, he was born on December 15, 1932 in Buffalo, New York, the son of Charles and Cecilia (Burchalewska) Zimpfer.
Following secondary school at Canisius High School, he attended the University of Notre Dame and graduated with his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in 1953. He entered the Society of Jesus the following year, on Sept. 7, 1954, at St. Andrew-on-Hudson, Poughkeepsie, New York.
Following his two year novitiate, he began studying philosophy at Loyola Seminary, Shrub Oak, New York (1954-56). From 1958-59 he taught Latin and science at the Loyola School, New York, and then added another year of teaching physics and math at McQuaid Jesuit High School, Rochester, New York.
In 1962, in preparation for ordination, he studied theology at Woodstock College, Woodstock, Maryland (1962-66). He received a Licentiate in Sacred Theology in June 1966. His ordination to the priesthood was celebrated on June 10, 1965 at Canisius College in Buffalo. His final step of Jesuit formation was tertianship, at Auriesville, New York (1966-67) followed by final vows on Feb. 2, 1968.
As a priest, he returned to McQuaid to teach math and physics from 1967-75. In 1975 he moved in a new direction, from teacher to administrator. He began with a year of studies in education at Columbia University. His first position as an administrator was as principal of St. Peter’s Prep, Jersey City, New Jersey (1976-80). He then returned to McQuaid, this time as principal (1980-86). He continued in administrative positions in Buffalo, at Canisius College (1986-93) and as assistant for planning at Canisius High School (1993-2012).
In earlier years, he was noted as the chairman of the shuffleboard games at Mitchell Farm, for his deliberate southpaw swing and drive on the golf course, and in recent years, for his skill in excelling at the football pool. Because of declining health and mobility, in 2012 he was transferred to Murray-Weigel Hall to pray for the Church and the Society.