Retired Boston City Planner; helped design Big Dig and Boston roads and parks;avid Boston historian
Carl A. Zellner, a former longtime resident of Boston and Charlestown, passed away June 29 at Cape Cod Hospital, Hyannis with his family at his side. He was 78 years old. Carl was born October 4, 1935 to Gladys and August Zellner in Oklahoma City, OK. There he graduated Classen High School and his further education included: Principia College, BA degree, University of Washington, MA degree and his doctoral work at Harvard. Carl’s career as a city planner spanned many decades and impacted the layout of many cities, towns, and highways. He also spent a few years in the US Coast Guard, active duty in Alaska before joining the USCG Reserves where he rose to the rank of Captain, O6 before retiring.
Carl, who was a retired city planner for the City of Boston, was in part responsible for design of the Big Dig and many roads and parks in the city. He had been retired and living in Palmyra, VA with his current wife, Virginia Foster for the past 10 years.
As an avid Boston historian, he had been doing research on a variety of subjects, followed by a visit to his daughter in Wellfleet at the time of his passing. He was preceded in death by his first wife Beverly (1934 to 1996.) His legacy: son, Charles Zellner and his wife, Susan of Lehighton, PA., Carla Smith and her husband, Jeff of Wellfleet, MA., Danielle Cahill and her husband, Bill of Nashville, TN. His legacy of grandchildren includes: Matthew Zellner, Mark Zellner, Nicole Zellner, Amber Wirth, Beverley Cahill, and Marina Smith; great grandchildren: Gabriel, Aubrey and Hannah Wirth, and Gloria Zellner. Carl is also survived by his cousin Merrilee Zellner of Newport, RI. A memorial service and celebration of Carl’s life will be held at the Bunker Hill Museum on September 7. Call for details. Donations in his memory can be made to Charlestown Historical Society, PO Box 291776, Charlestown, MA 02129.
Fun fact: Carl, due to his research and love of Charlestown history, was responsible for a historical marker noting the landing site of Paul Revere’s boat being moved to its current and correct location.