Michael Joseph Zinni
Zinni, Michael Joseph PGA Golf Professional Michael Zinni lost his brave battle against a brief and very aggressive lung infection on Tuesday, July 29, 2014, at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester, MN. The cause of the infection was never determined and as a result, no effective treatment was found. Michael Joseph Zinni was born on September 10, 1948, the eldest son of Evelyn and Anthony Zinni. He grew up in Wichita Falls, Texas, and it was there that he developed a love for the game of golf that eventually became his passion and his profession. An accomplished high school and college player, he graduated from Midwestern University and was an All-American while there. He later was honored by being named an Outstanding Alumni at the University. During his college years he caught the attention of Ray Hill, then the head pro at Hillcrest Country Club in St. Paul. It was after college that he entered the PGA program and it became the launching pad for his playing career and later becoming a club professional. It also brought him as a player to the 1980 Tapemark Tournament where he met the love of his life, Katie Daly. They were loving partners in life for 33 years. A humble and quiet man, Mike was known throughout the golf world. He was inducted into the Minnesota Golf Hall of Fame in 2012. He was cited for his successful service to the Sectional PGA and his top level playing. He served on the Minnesota Section Board of Directors for 15 years, and was its President in 1995-96. He was awarded Golf Professional of the Year in 1990. He also served on the PGA of America Board of Directors for two terms. He won the Tapemark Pro-Am, the MN. Section PGA Senior Championship twice, the MN. Senior Open three times and was named the Minnesota Section Senior Player of the Year five times. On a national level, he played in nine PGA Professional Championships, six PGA Senior Championships and four USGA Senior Open Championships. He was the golf coach at Minnesota State University from 2003-09. He had his 21st Hole-In-One this past March. Mike and Katie came to the Mankato Golf Club in 1987, the beginning of a relationship which became much more than employment. Mike has left an indelible fingerprint on the membership and the golf course itself, a place that he loved and where he invested so much of his life. He was a mentor to countless young golfers, who would often sit in the Pro Shop waiting for a chance to play golf with him. There are many other young men now in the golf profession as a result of his encouragement and example. He loved joining his friends on golf courses throughout the U.S. and Ireland. He enjoyed his friendships with other PGA professionals, who love to share their Zinni stories. His legacy is widespread. Mike is survived by his beloved wife, Katie. Other survivors are his mother, Evelyn, and brother, Eddie, both of Wichita Falls, Texas. He was preceded in death by his father Anthony and a brother, Tommy. Katie's family was his family, too, and those survivors include his nephew, Tommy Krueger who is like a son to him; mother-in-law Joy Daly; siblings Kevin and Margaret Daly, Jeanne and Tim McIntee, Peter and Lulu Daly, Tracy and Andy Bingham, Annie and Rich Krueger; nineteen nieces and nephews. A celebration of Mike's life will be held at 4:30pm Wednesday, August 6 at the Mankato Golf Club. Visitation will be from 2:00pm until the time of service on Wednesday.
Published on August 3, 2014