Eric Zastrow

Eric Zastrow died April 25, 2023 from a cancer that he would not let define him. Despite his diagnosis, he surpassed the odds and spent the last eight years pursuing his life, chasing dreams, and loving the folks around him.  Born in Chilton to Robert and Catherine Zastrow, he spent his childhood and teenage years mesmerized by anything with a motor or a video game controller. He graduated from Chilton High School in 2002 where he met his future wife Pamela Koehler through a mutual friend group. He went to Universal Technical Institute in Chicago where he earned a degree in automotive repair and worked many years as a Porsche and Mercedes Benz mechanic. After the recession of 2008, Eric needed to return to school and started a career in information technology.  He worked at a contractor for Information Technology Professionals and spent the last 3 years working as a network engineer for Calumet County Government. 

Eric was known for his dry wit and his ability to make others feel comfortable. He enjoyed getting together with friends for a game of cribbage, Dungeons and Dragons or video games while checking out the latest in whiskey or craft beer varieties.  He also enjoyed working on classic cars with his dad including a 1977 Pontiac Phoenix and a 1966 Chevy Caprice. 

In 2007, he married Pam and started planting roots in Appleton. Whether it was watching and commentating on B movies, taking afternoon walks or Friday nights out, Eric found ways to let Pam know she was the one for him.  Together they had many travels across the country and a milestone trip to Scotland for their 10-year wedding anniversary. They met life’s challenges together and found the humor in all moments. 

He is survived by his wife: Pam; his parents; his sibling: Sarah (Ryan) Arkens; half-siblings: Jason (Tiffany) Mensch and Tammy Haas; his grandparents: Clifford and Shirley Bougie; and grandfather-in-law Eugene Mertz. He is further survived by his mother-in-law: Cheryl Koehler; brothers-in-law: Joseph (Michelle) Koehler, Nicholas (Angie) Koehler, Richard Koehler; and sister-in-law: Jennifer Koehler. Eric also leaves behind his nieces and nephews, his beloved cat Shooter Kitten, and extended family. 

Eric is preceded in death by his father-in-law Thomas Koehler, his grandparents: Ed and Ida Zastrow; grandparents-in-law: Dorothy Mertz, LeRoy and Kathryn Koehler; and uncles Armend and Donald Zastrow.

Funeral service will be at 11:00 am on Saturday, May 6, 2023 at St. Matthew Lutheran Church (129 S. Mason St.) in Appleton with Rev. Jonathon Kuske officiating.  Friends may call at the Wieting Family Funeral Home (411 W. Main St.) in Chilton from 4:00 pm until 7:00 pm on Friday, May 5, 2023 and on Saturday at the church from 9:00 am until 10:45 am.

In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund has been established in the name of Eric Lee Zastrow.  

The family would like to extend a warm thank you to the Theda Care Hospice and all the caregivers that support Eric throughout the past year.  It truly takes a team effort to guide a loved one home.