Dr. Samuel John Mazzer, age 85, of Ravenna, died on Saturday, September 21, 2019 at home.
Dr. Mazzer was born April 8, 1934 in Kalamazoo, MI to Salvatore and Mona (Wells) Mazzer. Before college, he worked for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources for 6 years at various spots in Michigan, including his favorite time at Yankee Springs State Park. He graduated from Western Michigan University in 1962 with a Bachelor's degree in biology. He received his Ph.D. in botany from the University of Michigan. He was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Then he came to Kent State University in 1970 and was a professor of biology for 27 years. In retirement, he founded Wetland Systems, Inc., a wetlands consulting firm.
Dr. Mazzer was a highly-regarded mycologist, and volunteered his time consulting with emergency services in cases of mushroom poisonings. He was heavily involved in local conservation efforts. Working with his students, Boy Scouts, and various local groups, he is responsible for planting hundreds of trees in Northeastern Ohio. He donated his lifetime collection of thousands of plants and lichens to the KSU and UM Herbaria.
Dr. Mazzer enjoyed beekeeping and sold honey as Badger Honey Company in the 1970s and 80s. He also loved to fish and tie flies, he was an avid reader and a talented artist. Most of all he enjoyed spending time outdoors in nature and in his garden. He enjoyed cooking and canning, especially making pies.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Patricia Mazzer; daughters, Dr. Paula Mazzer, Mary Mazzer and Jessica Mazzer Julian, and his son-in-law, CJ. He was preceded in death by his parents, Salvatore and Mona (Wells) Mazzer; sisters, Margaret Owen and Vivian "Chick" Gillette.
Private services will be held at a later date. Memorials may be made to Hospice of the Western Reserve, 17876 St. Clair Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44110 or the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy (www.gtrlc.org). To share a memory, send a condolence, or light a candle, visit the Tribute Wall at www.bisslerandsons.com.
Services in care of Bissler & Sons Funeral Home and Crematory, 628 West Main Street, Kent, OH 44240.