James Elmer Zelfel
August 14, 1951- November 13, 2023
James Elmer Zelfel passed away on November 13 at UNMC in Omaha, surrounded and embraced by his family. Jim, the only child of Gerry and Mike, was born August 14, 1951, and grew up in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He graduated from St. Albert’s High School and attended Iowa State University. He enlisted in the Navy and served for six years. Afterwards, he graduated from UNO with an advanced degree in computer science.
In 1971, he married his high school sweetheart and the love of his life, Helen Shea and enjoyed a life full of faith, family and friends. He and Helen lovingly raised two children, Jim and Julie. For 30 years, he worked at OPPD’s nuclear power plant as a quality assurance auditor. He retired in 2010 and enjoyed many years of biking, traveling, and spending time with his family. He was a member of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus.
Above all else, Jim will be remembered for his service to others and selfless heart. He kept every promise he ever made and taught his eight grandchildren the importance of hard work, love of family, and faith in Christ.
Jim is preceded in death by his father and mother, Michael and Geraldine Zelfel. He is survived by wife, Helen; children, Jim (Jenny) and Julie (Dusty); and his eight grandchildren who he adored: Kristin, Elizabeth (Matt), Caitlyn, Megan, Tatum, Gabriel, Zoe, and Kellen; and great-grandchild, Spencer.
VISITATION: Thursday, November 16, 2023 5-7 p.m. at the West Center Chapel, followed by a VIGIL SERVICE: at 7 p.m. MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Friday, November 17, 2023 10:30 a.m. at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, 14330 Eagle Run Dr. INTERMENT: 2:30 pm at Omaha National Cemetery.
Memorials should be directed to the Siena Francis House or to the St. Vincent DePaul School.
To view a live broadcast of the Service, please go to www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “Live Cast” button at the top of the home page.