Leonard Seymour Zahn (né Zatuchny), 93, formerly of Great Neck, died peacefully at home in Malibu, CA, on Sept. 24 surrounded by his family. Born in Boston to David and Luba Zatuchny, he and his older brother, Bernard, were first-generation Americans. Len was particularly proud to have graduated from Boston Latin School, the “best public high school in the country.” He served as a communications officer in the 17th Photo Reconnaissance Squadron of the Air Force in the South Pacific during WWII and was very honored to serve his country. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts after the war and settled on Long Island with his new bride, Hilda.
Len worked in public relations, first with Hill and Knowlton and then for his own PR firm. He also became involved in politics in Great Neck. He was elected to the Board of Trustees of Thomaston, served as village historian and was then elected mayor. He and Hilda were very involved with Democratic politics in New York and he would be disappointed to know that he just missed voting for the first woman president. He was a former VP of the Malibu Democratic Club.
Len was preceded in death by Hilda in 2004, and is survived by his daughters Claudia Zahn and Laura Zahn Rosenthal of Malibu; grandsons Joe and Will Rosenthal; son-in-law Walter Rosenthal; sister-in-law Harriet Guyer; and many nieces and nephews. Len loved talking about politics, the war, Ted Williams (whom he interviewed for UPI), sports, Boston, New York and his family. He could do the Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle in less than 30 minutes, in ink—a dying art. As we lose more of our WWII heroes, let us give them a quiet thanks for their courage and heart—they will be missed.