Obituary: Gloria Zakar 1951 – April 9, 2019

GLORIA ZAKAR 1951 – April 9, 2019

Gloria Zakar passed away peacefully with family members by her side on April 9. 2019.

She was born in Pfarrkirchen, Germany, but came to the United States at the age of 3 months. Her extended family remained in Hungary, but Gloria was able to occasionally visit with them over the years. Hungarian family remained an important part of her life and a touchstone for her family connections.

Gloria met George at the young age of 18. They quickly fell in love, married, and had a daughter Andrea and son George (Bandi). The family moved to Los Alamos in 1975. She worked full time, obtained a bachelor’s degree from the College of Santa Fe and became a Certified Public Accountant.

She worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory from 1984 until her retirement in 2005. She was the Payroll Group Leader for many years and contributed her many talents to several special lab-wide projects. She was appreciated by those who had the pleasure of working with her.

Gloria loved to travel. As the children were growing, family vacations were often spent at Navajo Lake in northern NM. From 1985 to 2018 she and George had a time share on a houseboat on Lake Powell and invited several family members and friends to join in on the fun. 

Once retired, Gloria and George became international travelers, with visits to Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and many locations in the USA and Canada. They began to split their time between New Mexico and Arizona.

When not traveling, Gloria was cooking meals for the elderly and making sleeping bags for the homeless. She also enjoyed her visits with her only grandchild (Zolton).

She reconnected with her faith in the Catholic Church and was involved with many activities of the Immaculate Heart of Mary parish in Los Alamos. She contributed to the well-being of her family, friends, and colleagues with her caring, empathy, and subtle good humor.

In January 2018 Gloria began identifying that she had speech issues and went to Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix. She was diagnosed with Stage 4 Glioblastoma. She immediately wanted to participate in clinical trials and knew it was unlikely to be a positive outcome for her but hoped her participation could help others.

Though she had been successful in battling the tumor, she ultimately could not overcome the infections and went to be with the Lord a few months shy of her and George’s 50th wedding anniversary.

Funeral services will be held on Friday, May 3, 2019, at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 3700 Canyon Road, Los Alamos, NM with a Rosary at 9:00am and Mass at 10:00am. A reception will follow immediately afterwards.

Gloria was a strong believer in both science and religion. In lieu of flowers she would prefer a memorial contribution be made to Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church ( or to Barrow Neurological Foundation ( If the latter, please identify the contribution is in memorial of Gloria Zakar so that 100% of the contribution will be applied directly to brain tumor research.