Eleanor Zuccaro

Eleanor Zuccaro, age 75, of Midland, South Dakota, died on Friday, October 4, 2019 at her home east of Midland.

Eleanor Claire (Mathews) Zuccaro, age 75, of Midland, passed away on October 4th, 2019. She fought a courageous battle with cancer and her wishes to pass away at home were honored. 

Eleanor was born to the late Ralph and Pauline (Herman) Mathews on March 3, 1944. She was raised on the Mathews ranch north of Draper, SD and attended country school during her elementary years. She graduated from Riggs High School in Pierre, South Dakota in 1962. During high school she met Charles Zuccaro while enjoying a night of roller skating. They were married on August 13, 1962 and they built their home on the Zuccaro ranch east of Midland. They had two daughters, Paula and Christina. 

Eleanor enjoyed ranching life and was a rare soul who took the job of eradicating Canadian Thistle seriously. She was especially proud of the trees she planted around the ranch and took great pride in watching them grow. Eleanor was the consummate host. She always had a fresh cup of coffee for a guest and was quick to set an extra plate for dinner; no one went away hungry. Her love of dancing was passed onto her daughters and grandchildren who she taught to dance in the living room. She taught the importance of taking care of nature and animals and always stressed education and hard work. 

She loved her dogs, DeDe, Toby, Abby and Buddy and adopted a stray cat whom she named Tommy Tunes. 

She is survived by her husband, Charles; daughters, Paula (Scott Carson) and Christina (Edward Temengil); grandchildren, Nastassia (Michael) Janes and Christian Alavi; great-granddaughter, Karoline Alavi; step-grandson ChiJay; sister, Patricia Greer; brothers, Philip (Audrey) Mathews, Gerald (Wanda) Mathews, and Fredrick (Mary) Mathews; and a host of nieces and nephews. 

She was preceded in death by her parents, Ralph and Pauline Mathews; niece Lynda Oldaker; and nephews Larry Mathews and Mike Oldaker.

The family wishes to thank all those who were involved in her care, especially Mayo Clinic Oncology and the Pierre Avera Oncology Infusion doctors, nurses, and staff. Also a thank you to all friends and family who sent cards and well wishes to Eleanor, they lifted her spirits. 

Eleanor requested to be cremated and a Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. A mass at St. Williams Church in Midland will be held in her honor on Saturday, October 12, 2019 at 7:00 pm. After the mass the family welcomes everybody to join them at Midland Food and Fuel for a time of refreshments and good laughs.

Instead of flowers the family requests donations to be made to your area animal rescue in honor of Eleanor.


Arrangements are with Rush Funeral Home of Philip.

The Pioneer Review

221 E. Oak Street
Philip, SD 57567
Telephone: (605) 859-2516
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