Obituary of Mike Zauss |

Obituary of Mike Zauss

On Saturday, December 14th, Mike Zauss died peacefully at home surrounded by his family and beloved dog Sasha. He is survived by his wife Lis, his sister Sandy, his daughters and their husbands – Sue & Kevin and Michelle & Robbie, his step daughter Linda and husband Pancho, and his grandchildren Junior and Madison.

Mike was a husband, a father, a brother, an octogenarian, a proud navy man, a giver, a lover, a lifelong learner, a mensa, a Republican, an NRA member, and a teller of long intricate stories of his many life experiences. He loved working outside on his land, camping, boating and RV’ing with Lis and Sasha, and watching his beloved 49ers every week (hopefully they make it to the Super Bowl this year!). He was born Feb 10, 1939 in Hollywood, CA. He moved from So Cal to Nor Cal at age 5 and spent his formative years in San Francisco, where he was, as we like to say, a “greaser”. He loved buying, selling, and working on cars and owned a lot of classics over the years. He joined the Navy at age 18 and completed his service 4 years later. After leaving the Navy he worked in several jobs until finding his way back to the Navy, this time as a civilian. He spent 10 years at the Hunters Point Naval Shipyard and then 20 years at the Mare Island Naval Shipyard working as a Superintendent on nuclear submarines and secret missions to Russia gathering US intelligence. He retired in 1994 and he and Lis left the Bay Area and moved to their forever home in Grass Valley. He found a second career as a Real Estate Agent/Broker and owned his own business – Best Homes and Land. He and Lis also loved working their land and turned it into their own paradise over their 22 years there.

Mike had two tries at marriage before finding his forever wife – Elisabeth Jones. He first married Patricia Brosky in 1961 and had his first daughter Sue in 1963. He and Patricia divorced in 1967. He then married Kathy Toomey in 1968 and had his second daughter, Michelle, in 1974. He and Kathy divorced in 1976. In 1977 he met Lis, aka “Frenchy”. They eventually got married in 1993 in Reno. Lis was born and raised in France and dad and her took many trips to France over the years. Lis had two daughters of her own, Nancy and Linda. Sadly, Nancy passed away 7 years ago. Linda and her husband Poncho currently live in Arizona and their son Junior lives in Kansas with his wife and child. Mike and Lis were together for 42 years and Lis will deeply miss her best friend and life-long companion.

A burial service is scheduled on January 20th at 11am at the Hooper and Weaver Mortuary (459 Hollow Way, Nevada City, CA 95959). The service will include a military ceremony in honor of our dad’s many years of service with the Navy.

Support Local Journalism

The burial will be private and be followed by a celebration of life at 1pm at the Elks Lodge in Nevada City (518 CA-49, Nevada City, CA 95959). If you would like to attend either, please reach out to Sue or Michelle.

Arrangements by Hooper and Weaver Mortuary.

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Grass Valley and Nevada County make The Union’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Your donation will help us continue to cover COVID-19 and our other vital local news.


Connect with needs and opportunities from

Get immediate access to organizations and people in our area that need your help or can provide help during the Coronavirus crisis.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.