Herschel Zirger 1926-2015
Herschel Edmund Zirger, 89, of Holton, passed away Sunday, May 10, 2015 at his home.
He was born March 3, 1926, in Holton, the son of Albert Edward and Genevieve E. (Ludwig) Zirger.
Mr. Zirger attended Washburn University, the University of Kansas and Tulsa University. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in 1952 and a Master’s Degree in 1954, both in Petroleum Engineering.
Herschel was a Registered Professional Engineer in Texas and Oklahoma. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1944 to 1950 and was released to inactive duty as a Naval Aviator (rank Lieutenant). Herschel was a petroleum engineer for Texaco from June 1952 until September 1953 and for Ohio Oil Company (presently Marathon Oil) from June 1954 until August 1955.
In August 1955, Mr. Zirger joined Arabian American Oil Company (Aramco) in New York. Herschel was transferred to Saudi Arabia in September 1956. His assignments included drilling and production engineering duties, drilling oil and water wells, assembling drilling rigs, testing oil wells, specifying drilling and production equipment oil and water wells and troubleshooting drilling and production problems.
In 1971, Mr. Zirger established a Saudi-Registered Limited Liability Partnership, which provided consulting services and consultants to Aramco for the supervision, inspection and maintenance of oil wells, water wells and drilling operations. Herschel incorporated Zirtech Inc. in the state of Texas in 1977. This company’s mission was to purchase oilfield equipment and supplies in the USA and to export these items to foreign oil and oilfield service companies.
Herschel founded Zirger Engineering Co. Inc., which was incorporated in the state of Texas in 1978. The company’s core business activity was in selling and leasing wireline fishing tools to the drilling sector of the oil industry. Mr. Zirger sold his ownership interest in Zirtech Inc. in 1983 and Zirger Arabia Ltd, in 1988.
From 1980 through 1983, Mr. Zirger assisted in the modification of the Oil and Gas Taxation Guide for the state of Kansas, and was a consultant to the Bureau of Property Valuation of the Department of Revenue for the state of Kansas. Herschel also acted as a consultant and testified regarding numerous oil and gas property tax pronouncements for various county governments in the state of Kansas.
Herschel joined Fazenda International of the Virgin Islands Inc. in 1986 as a principal and the Vice President of Engineering. He was a member of AF&AM 225, York Rite, Arab Shrines Temple and Scottish Rite, all of Topeka.
He is survived by: his nephew, Craig Zirger (Cathy) of Frankfort; his nieces, Gwen Neel of Germantown, Md., Cheri Zirger of Lawrence, Renee Evans (Tom) of Blue Springs, Mo., and Liz Hochscheld (John) of Overland Park; his brother, William Zirger (Mildred) of Lenexa; his sister-in-law, Patricia Zirger; and seven great-nieces and nephews. Herschel was preceded in death by his brother, Merle Zirger; his sister, Doris Shell; his nephew, Dewitt Shell; and great-nephew, Joshua Zirger.
Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, May 16 at Mercer Funeral Home in Holton. Interment with military honors will follow in Holton Cemetery. The family will greet friends from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at the funeral home.
Memorial contributions may be given to the Shriner’s Children’s Hospital, sent in care of Mercer Funeral Home, P.O. Box 270, Holton, KS 66436. To leave a special message for the family, visit www.mercerfuneralhomes.com