"Paul is an amazing man. He is loving, kind, handsome, intelligent, sweet, funny, and thoughtful. He is a wonderful husband, the love of my life, and my best friend. Every moment we spent together was a perfect memory. I will miss him forever."
Paul Zazarine’s memorial service...
Paul Zazarine’s memorial service was held January 16, 2011, in the new-car showroom at Carl Black Chevrolet-Buick-GMC in Orlando, Florida. The memorial’s organizers felt Paul would want a representation of his favorite cars at the service. The centerpiece was this Tyrol Blue ’67 GTO, furnished by Isaac Del Rio of Orlando, Florida.
—Alexis "Lexi" Zazarine
Paul Zazarine, whose contributions to automotive journalism made him a living icon in the industry, passed away on January 3, 2011. The official cause of death was heart failure. He was 58 years old.
For Pontiac fans, Paul was one of their staunchest allies. He had a passion for the brand, the restoration of GTOs, and the history of GM's Excitement Division. He was known for energizing the classic Pontiac hobby in the mid-'80s with the release of his and Chuck Roberts' book, GTO Restoration Guide: 1964-1972, and for the GTO and Pontiac-themed books that he authored (How to Restore Your Muscle Car, Pontiac's Greatest Decade 1959-1969: The Wide Track Era, Muscle Car Color History GTO 1964-1967, and The Collector's Guide to GTO 1964-1974.) In addition, Paul contributed hundreds of articles on Pontiacs to a myriad of car-hobbyist magazines, including at one time High Performance Pontiac. He was also the past editor of Pontiac Enthusiast magazine, among others.
Gary Riley and Level One Restoration...
Gary Riley and Level One Restoration of Arvada, Colorado, designed, built, and donated this ’66 GTO urn. It is painted in Platinum, which was one of Paul’s favorite Pontiac exterior colors for the model-year.
On January 16, 2011, Paul's wife, Alexis "Lexi" Zazarine, and Carl Black Chevrolet-(formerly Pontiac) Buick-GMC in Orlando, Florida, hosted Paul's memorial service. "It was our time to celebrate the memories of Paul's life, not to mourn his death," says event-organizer David Gehr of Orlando's co-hosting Wide Track Warriors. "Our club was honored to host Paul's memorial. He was always there for us and will live on in spirit for our Pontiac family."
Attendees came from across the country—among them were many of Paul's friends from the automobile-hobbyist community: Larry Dobbs, Greg Donahue, Stan Rarden, Chuck West, Chuck Roberts, Marty Schorr, and others.
Jim Wangers—who co-wrote his memoir Glory Days with Paul—was unable to attend, but prepared a written eulogy, which was read by Sandy Berry. "Paul Zazarine was the best damn automotive enthusiast writer I have ever worked with, and believe me, I've worked with many!" Wangers wrote. "He had incredible respect for the product. He liked Chevys and Corvettes, he liked Fords, he adored Mopars, he enjoyed writing about Oldsmobiles and Buicks, but he loved Pontiacs! ... and I loved him for that."
"Paul Zazarine is gone now, way too early in his life," Wangers' statement continued. "Will he be forgotten? Never! Never! Never! Nobody has documented Pontiac better. We'll miss you buddy, and you can be sure we'll never forget you."
HPP extends its condolences to Alexis "Lexi" Zazarine, Paul's family and friends, and all those in the Pontiac hobby who are affected by his passing.
These memorial attendees—all...
These memorial attendees—all members of the Pontiac community—show that Paul’s kindred passion for Pontiacs lives on through them despite his passing.
This banner summarizes exactly...
This banner summarizes exactly what Paul’s memorial service was all about.
Wide Track Warrior members...
Wide Track Warrior members Bill Henry and Alan Neal—in cooperation with Sandlake Cakes in Orlando, Florida—provided this Pontiac-themed cake, complete with an edible re-creation of the Hurst four-speed shifter ball. Behind the cake is Paul’s favorite photograph of him with Pontiac ad-man/close-friend Jim Wangers.
Paul’s wife, Alexis “Lexi”...
Paul’s wife, Alexis “Lexi” Zazarine, spoke of her love for him. Afterwards, Paul’s relatives, friends and colleagues in attendance told their personal stories of how he brought joy into their lives.