Family Login:

Russell Arthur "Russ"  Zaharion

Russell Arthur "Russ" Zaharion
  • August 30, 1928 - January 5, 2018
  • Battle Creek, Michigan
  • Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan
    222 N. Kalamazoo Mall, Suite 100
    Kalamazoo, MI 49007-3882

Share This Obituary

Send Flowers
 Local Florists

Memories & Candles

“MY sincere condolences for you and your family. It is never easy dealing with a loss of a loved one. I hope you find comfort as I did in John 11: 25 ...Read More »
1 of 22 | Posted by: D H - Phoenix, AZ

“Melva and family. So sorry to hear of Russ's passing. We have many fond memories of the floor hockey days and more. May he rest in pease. ”
2 of 22 | Posted by: Rick & Cathy Rocco - Palmetto, FL

“I am sorry to read the passing of your husband, father and grandfather. Having said that tells in part the story of the man, the person he was and...Read More »
3 of 22 | Posted by: Richard Bokhart - Family Friend

“To the Zaharion family,Our hearts go out to your loss. Pleas know that although we only met Russ senior a time or two we are here for you in your...Read More »
4 of 22 | Posted by: Herbie Grigg - Stuart, FL

“Sincerest condolences to the Zaharion and Russell families. ❤ ”
5 of 22 | Posted by: Bob an Patti Hubbard - East Leroy, MI

“We are sorry for your loss. He and your entire family were great additions to our neghborhood while growing up. Your lives are proof of what a good...Read More »
6 of 22 | Posted by: Dean Chadderdon - Townville, SC

“Sorry to hear about Russ, I enjoyed talking to him when he was at Zaharions automotive. A very good man. ”
7 of 22 | Posted by: Ken Olivarri - Battle Creek, MI

“I enjoyed talking to Russ when he was at the garage Zaharions automotive garage. Very good man. ”
8 of 22 | Posted by: Ken Olivarri - Battle Creek, MI

“My 1st real job was working for Russ at The Zahara. I will never forget this amazing man. Russ was more of a father figure to me instead of a boss....Read More »
9 of 22 | Posted by: Noël Cobb - Austin, TX

“My first real job, working for Russ at the "old" Zahara- good memories. I always thought; if I can just work for a man like Russ forever; life will...Read More »
10 of 22 | Posted by: Dave Youngs

“Melba Sorry about Russ I went in the service with your brother Neil Is he still down in Ohio I would see him in Sears when he worked there... ”
11 of 22 | Posted by: Dick and Velma Doubleday - MI

“Dear Zaharion family,Please accept my condolences for your Loss. May the good Lord keep you and bless you during your time of grieving. I remember...Read More »
12 of 22 | Posted by: Glenn Conrad - battle creek, MI

“Our deepest Condolences to the Zaharion family. We love you and are thinking about you during this tough time. Our prayers are with you all. ”
13 of 22 | Posted by: Allison Fillman - Alpharetta, GA

“I'm so sorry for the loss of your dad.Debbie Haineault ”
14 of 22 | Posted by: A friend

“I was indeed saddened by the news Russ had passed. I have many fond memories of Russ. My sincere condolences to his family and friends. With much...Read More »
15 of 22 | Posted by: Michael Christman - Battle Creek, MI

“I am so sorry to hear about my friends passing. Russ was a very dear friend as I'm sure he was to many. My sincere condolences to the entire Zaharion...Read More »
16 of 22 | Posted by: Ruben Gutierrez - Long Beach, CA

“Angela and Mike, so sorry to hear about the loss of your Dad. Want you to know that you and your family will be in all the Frosts thoughts and...Read More »
17 of 22 | Posted by: Patrick Frost - Olivet, MI

“Mr. Zaharion was always friendly and ready to talk whenever we bumped into each other. He was an active citizen who served our commuity well by...Read More »
18 of 22 | Posted by: Thomas Wood - Battle Creek, MI

“May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived. ”
19 of 22 | Posted by: Ron Brown - Climax, MI

“Russ and Melva. Names, always used in unison, were part of my heritage. Dad and Mom (Bob and Geri Davis) were good friends with them in high school...Read More »
20 of 22 | Posted by: Robert Davis - Jackson, MI

“On the Loss of a Husband, Father and GrandfatherSome men leave their mark on the worldby the way they liveand the difference they makein the lives...Read More »
21 of 22 | Posted by: Dave & Vonnie Bell - Maumee, OH

“What a great man he was. Such fond memories we have of him and all of the family. He loved his family tremendously. Prayers to all of you. ”
22 of 22 | Posted by: Jamie and Herb Tenney - MI

Army Emblem

Russell Arthur "Russ" Zaharion, 89 of Battle Creek died with his family at his side, at Glenn Arbor Hospice Residence on Friday, January 5, 2018.

Russ was born August 30, 1928 in Battle Creek, Michigan, the son of Thomas and Angela (Englebritzen) Zaharion. Russ grew up in Battle Creek and graduated from Battle Creek Central High School, earned an Associate Degree from Cleary Business College in Ypsilanti and attended Western Michigan University. Russ honorably served his country in the U.S. Army with the occupation forces in Japan. He was employed as a cost accountant for the former Oliver Farm Equipment Company. Russ owned and operated Northside Bar on McCamly St. from 1956 to 1963. Russ built and operated Zahara Restaurant at 1349 E. Columbia Avenue, opening Dec. 6, 1963, until he sold in 1979. After that, he helped his sons start up their businesses in Florida and Michigan. Russ still found the time to farm, raising beef cattle and supplying hay for Binder Park Zoo. He was also a contractor for Pioneer Seed, detasseling corn for 10 years. Russ never completely retired, even this past summer he was still bailing hay.

Russell A. Zaharion was united in marriage to the former Melva Jane Webster on September 3, 1950 at First Presbyterian Church in Battle Creek. Surviving are Melva, his wife of 67 years; three sons, Thomas (Diane) Zaharion of Marshall, Russell (Rebecca) Zaharion of Stuart, FL, John (Renee) Zaharion of Burlington; a daughter, Angela (Mike) Russell of Battle Creek; 11 grandchildren, Amy, Katie, Melissa, Megan, Kelly, Andrea, Bryan, Nick, Taylor, Sarah, Paige; and six+ great-grandchildren, Zack, Nick, Emma, Connor, Ellie, Evalyn and one on the way. Russ was preceded in death by his parents.

Russ was a member of First Presbyterian Church and American Legion Post #54. He enjoyed farming, gardening and fishing at his cottage at Wall Lake. He loved family gatherings and spending time with them. He will be remembered as a man who entertained his family and friends with his amazing story telling ability. He stressed the importance of hard work and education to young people by his example and in his stories. Russ was a member of Scout Troop #33 at Post Elementary and helped all three of his sons earn the rank of Eagle Scout. He was a man who loved his family and was very proud of them.

Friends will be received 5:00 -7:00 p.m. Tuesday at the Farley Estes Dowdle Funeral Home & Cremation Care. Memorial services will be officiated by Rev. Pat Weatherwax at First Presbyterian Church 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, January 10, 2018. A family committal service will be held at Hickory Corners Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to First Presbyterian Church, 111 Capital Avenue N.E., Battle Creek, MI 49017 or Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan, 222 N Kalamazoo Mall #100, Kalamazoo, MI 49007. Personal messages for the family may be placed here (above) at