Charles Rex Zard was born on April 21, 1926 in Mitchell, SD to Frank and Sally (Conrad) Zard. He had two brothers and four sisters and was the youngest of the seven children. In his boyhood years, the family lived in Plano and then moved to Mitchell, where he attended school. When he was eighteen years old, he joined the army and on Christmas Day, 1944, he was aboard a C-47 transport plane that went down in a hilly, wooden area of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Twelve soldiers died and fourteen others were injured. He was hospitalized with major injuries for over a year.
After the army, he moved back to Mitchell and worked as a welder. He fell in love with Gladys Michalek and married in 1947. The family moved to Orange, CA in the 1950's.
Rex was a hard-working man and provided for his loving wife (Gladys) and their four children in their growing years. Rex was an excellent welder for Sully Miller, a large construction company in Orange. He had a very physical job welding large pieces of heavy equipment.
He enjoyed the outdoors and the time spent with Gladys remodeling their home in Orange with bricklaying and outdoor landscaping projects. He also enjoyed water activities like scuba diving at Newport and Laguna Beach along with their boating and camping trips to Lake Elsinore.
In 1978, after their children were raised, he and Gladys moved back Mitchell, the hometown he loved. They built their dream home overlooking a beautiful farm field and Firesteel Creek just outside of Mitchell. They so enjoyed their beautiful home for nearly 35 years. Rex was semi-retired when moving back to Mitchell and owned Burr Street Rentals and the Saw Shop for many years.
Rex's final years were lived at Firesteel Healthcare Center in Mitchell. The family so appreciates the care and compassion he received there. He is preceded in death by his loving wife, Gladys, his parents, Frank and Sally Zard, and his two brothers and four sisters. Rex is survived by his four children: Rene’ (Bobby) Pruitt, Rad (Rena) Zard, Janine (Mike) Oppenheimer, Bruce (Vickie) Zard, seven grandchildren, and several great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.