“Just another day in Paradise” was the common phrase heard by Chuck as he enjoyed life with his wife and family in the beautiful Northwoods of Wisconsin. Integrity, Vision, Hard Work, and Sacrifice write the story of an amazing man who has moved from Paradise to PARADISE.

Gene “Chuck” Zaugg died peacefully at home in Eagle River, Wis., on Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019, at the age of 67.

He was born May 2, 1952, in Rockford, Ill., to Ben and Lydia (Schafer) Zaugg with older brothers, Gerald, Lynn, Larry and sister, Nancy.

The “Work hard and play hard” Zaugg motto was ingrained in him starting very young while working excavation for his older brother, Jerry, and Zaugg Excavation. This led to building homes at the young age of 21 and becoming a Realtor/broker to market and sell them. 

In 1976, he married Pamela (Nyquist), whom he loved and cared for until he was taken home to Heaven.

They had four children, Jessica (Kendal) Baker, Jeffrey (Michelle) Zaugg, Jonathon (Tamara) Zaugg and Jinelle (Michael) Siergiej, all living in the Greater Twin Cities of Minnesota.

Chuck was an amazing dad who loved and challenged his kids to do the best in all they did.

Chuck’s gift of being a visionary led to risk-taking when he brought his family to Eagle River in 1992, to turn a deserted boys camp into Zaugg’s Resort on Anvil Lake. With the family as his crew, Chuck taught his kids to work hard and made sacrifices to see his dream fulfilled.

His faith and integrity was seen in everything he did and Chuck believed “A job worth doing is worth doing right.” He built hundreds of custom quality homes and impacted everyone he worked with because of his integrity and hard work.

Chuck coached and played basketball, helped start the women’s hockey team and 3-on-3 Ice Hockey Tournaments. He spent time at the high school gym and local hockey arena, and was his kids’ No. 1 fan and coach.

When the kids left home he became very involved at the tennis club and played basketball, where he continued in his competitive nature.

Chuck’s faith in Jesus was seen by his sincere heart and the actions that followed. He was an elder at St. Germain Evangelical Free Church and helped with several community events and fundraisers, where he brought wisdom and discernment to everything in which he was involved.

His family continues to grow with 11 precious grandchildren who know him as Papa.

Chuck loved teaching his grandchildren to water ski and play sports. He wanted them to know the love of God and was so very proud of them. God has blessed him with a wonderful family!

When diagnosed with stage-4 lung cancer in January 2018, he was devastated, however, his faith carried him. Chuck told everyone, “God has me in His Hands” and looked at the positives rather than the negatives.

With God at his side he went through chemo treatments, brain surgery, radiation and clinical trials, but the cancer continued to grow. He had gone through every possible treatment and continued to claim, “In my weakness God will make me strong.” As his body weakened, his faith strengthened.

On Dec. 19, Chuck’s last words were “Praise God” as he entered heaven!  His wish for his family and friends is to embrace life today for no one knows what tomorrow may bring.

A celebration service will be on Saturday, Jan 4, 2020, at noon at St. Germain Evangelical Free Church, 6065 Hwy. 70 East, St. Germain. Family will welcome attendees beginning at 10 a.m. There will be a light lunch afterward.

In lieu of donating flowers, please consider a donation to the nonprofit Northwoods Share (P.O. Box 1162, Eagle River, WI 54521) or a gift toward a Chuck Zaugg memorial garden to be constructed in the spring. (Gifts can be sent in care of Custom Landscaping by calling (715) 479-6762 or emailing gardencenter@custom-landscaping.com).

Arrangements by Gaffney-Busha Funeral Home, Eagle River.  Online condolences may be expressed at gaffney-busha.com.