BY HONG VAN
Zenaida Guerzon, a long-time contributor and volunteer to the Filipino community, passed away peacefully and suddenly in her home in Seattle on Aug. 11 as a result of heart failure. She was 75.
Known for her passion to help the Filipino community, especially its seniors, she dedicated a lot of her time volunteering at the International Drop-in Center (IDIC) – a nonprofit senior-services center – and eventually became its executive director for 13 years.
Upon her retirement with the IDIC, she later formed her own nonprofit organization called the Asia Pacific Senior Alliance(APSA), which also serves seniors.
Not only was Guerzon’s kindness and passion known among the Filipino community, she also gained respect from other people including King County Executive Ron Sims.
In an article in the Seattle Times, Sims – who had known Guerzon for about 20 years – had this to say about her.
“She was one of the most wonderful people you ever wanted to meet; a magnificent lady. She always cared about other people, particularly seniors, and especially Filipino seniors. She provided the kind of assistance that kept a lot of seniors intact.”
Along the way, Guerzon was a teacher, a businesswoman, a real estate investor and more. She was also a dedicated family person who raised two children on her own after her husband passed away in 1968.
Zenaida Fuentebella Guerzon is survived by her two children, Michael and Theresa, as well as four grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins in the United States and Philippines.
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that memorial contributions may be made to APSA or IDIC in her name.
Visitation is Wednesday, Aug. 17 and Thursday, Aug. 18 from 9 a.m.- 8 p.m. at the Bonnie Watson on 1720 Broadway. There will be a Rosary Service on Friday, Aug. 19 at 7 p.m. and Vigil Service on Saturday, Aug. 20 at St. Benedict Catholic Church in Wallingford, located at 1805 N 49th St. Interment will be at Holyroad Catholic Cemetery.