The Howell Public School system lost a beloved member of its family last week when former Taunton art teacher Bernard Zollo died on July 17 at his home.
According to his obituary Zollo was born and raised in Brooklyn before moving to Toms River in 1989. After earning his Master’s Degree in education from Hunter College Zollo spent 20 years as a teacher at Taunton School.
Reaction to Zollo’s passing on the Howell Patch Facebook page showed what an impact he made on his students over two decades. “He was a true inspiration who not only made me more confident in my own work, but also showed me how a persons art could inspire others and have a potential power to improve society,” said Tim Trembley. Heather Elkin added that Zollo, “always made me believe in my talents.”
Even in his last year in the classroom Zollo continued to inspire the children he taught. “He was a great teacher who took his time with her and really deepened her respect and appreciation for art,” said Michelle Konar whose daughter was in his class last year.
The impact of his work was felt not only by his students but also by colleagues. Lori Zimmerman McCoy, an art teacher at Ardena and Adelphia called Zollo “a great friend and co-worker.”
Zollo’s obituary said he is survived by his dear friend Jack Kalmus, his sisters Jean Ceci and Linda Burke and his nieces and nephews, adding, “Bernie looked at the world through an artist’s eyes. He loved that he could share that view with his friends, family and students.”
The family will receive family and friends on July 25 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Timothy E. Ryan Home for Funerals located at 995 Fischer Boulevard in Toms River.