Zarko Draganic
  • 47 years old
  • Date of birth: Oct 1, 1966
  • Date of passing: Mar 6, 2014
May the wind be forever in Zarko's sails

This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Zarko Draganic, born on October 1, 1966 and passed away on March 6, 2014. We will remember him forever. Please share your thoughts and stories here.

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Kevin Foisy on 23rd March 2017

"I am in shock. I just learned of Zarko's passing.  We were friends in high school with a common passion for technology.  We used to hang out now and then, often making a trip to the local Radio Shack.  Zarko was a brilliant guy and someone that I looked up to. I had only been in touch with him a few times over the years.  I'm just shocked that he's not with us anymore.  Can't express how sad this leaves me.  Rest in peace my friend."

This tribute was added by Josh Carter on 6th March 2017

"Z, I looked up to you so much when I started my career and you were there to guide me. I'm sure I annoyed the heck out of you at times, being a young new-to-the-job engineer, but you always made time for me. You didn't just make me a better technologist, you made me a better person. I wish you were still here."

This tribute was added by zem joaquin on 6th March 2017

"Z, we miss you so much. Our little community has such a hole without you. It is taking everything I have to not spend my day crying. I love you with all of my heart and I hope that you are sailing through the clouds."

This tribute was added by Robb Wirts on 6th March 2017

"Remembering Zarko today, and sending our love to those he left behind.

The Wirts Family"

This tribute was added by Greg & Debbie Dorland on 1st October 2016

"Zarko-we miss you often but never more than this summer while cruising in Croatia...we had planned to go together...your original homeland is a beautiful place...but sad without you..."

This tribute was added by sophie azouaou on 6th March 2016

"Heaven has gained a brilliant, innovative, generous angel. I am sure you are teaching angels to sail with you in the deep blue sky :-)."

This tribute was added by Nina Patterson on 6th March 2016

"Still sad that you are not here still.
Blessings upon you!"

This tribute was added by Robb Wirts on 6th March 2016

"Dear Nellie, Sam, and Vivi,  We love you. Zarko is sorely missed.

The Wirts Family"

This tribute was added by Virginia Morris on 6th March 2016

"Dear Nellie and Sam and Vivvie, am sending you much love on this day. I know you must be sad and am  just sending you each a big hug, love Ginio"

This tribute was added by Scott Schereschewsky on 28th January 2016

"Zarko had an incredible reach and plenty of passion. I am sure he touched many lives other than mine. The world has lost one of its bright lights. Sailing to Havana with you is one of the highlights."

This tribute was added by Curt Wheeler on 12th October 2015

"I have not seen you in over 20 years but do miss you as I teach in the halls of TISS, our old high school here in Brockville. I still mention you and our old classmates and to my physics classes. I speak of your warm smile and love of science. A framed 1984 photo of you smiling, sitting at an early, school IBM desk top computer with some words bragging about you being the school's first student to attend the World Science fair in London, England proudly adorn's my classroom. You are a shining light for many old friends and classmates. I do wish your family peace and best wishes."

This tribute was added by zem joaquin on 2nd October 2015

"Z, JJ & I miss you terribly. I hope you have found peace. You will never be forgotten and will always be deeply loved by us."

This tribute was added by Patrick Dyson on 1st October 2015

"Zarko - best wishes in the land of free food, student heaven."

This tribute was added by Virginia Morris on 1st October 2015

"Nellie, am wishing you a beautiful day in memory of Zarko- on his birthday... Love, , Ginio"

This tribute was added by Julie Sanchez on 24th August 2015

"I'm a bit late as I just stumbled upon this news.  I knew Zarko many years ago.  For someone as talented and gifted as he was he always exuded a humbleness that I've never forgotten.  This news has truly shook me.  I hadn't seen him in years nor did I ever meet his family but I hope that your grief is subdued somewhat just by realizing what a gift you had, even if it was only temporary.  When my son was born on Oct 1st 1996, 3 years after the last time I'd seen Zarko, the coincidence did not escape me.  I vividly remember them handing me my beautiful little boy and thinking he was born on Zarkos Birthday.   That happy thought now means 100x more.  My heart truly hurts :("

This tribute was added by Paul Fairfield on 26th July 2015

"To the family of Zarko Draganic, please accept my deepest condolences.
I learned only yesterday of Zarko’s death at a gathering of old friends. Unfortunately I lost touch with Zarko many years ago. We were childhood friends back in Brockville, Ontario in the 1970s and early 80s. A whole circle of us---Zarko, Tom Mitten, Dean Logie, Travis Cauley, Bill McCracken, myself, and some others---grew up together, from kindergarden at Brittania Heights through the elementary and high school years. Zarko was much loved by all of us. From the age of 5 when I met him he was full of life, a very smart kid and so funny. He kept us laughing in his inimitable way, jokes I still remember 40 years later, that twinkle in his eye and an infectious laugh. We had so much fun together. I’ll never forget the times we would hang out at his house, where he introduced me to such new inventions as the CD and the computer, that magical blue-screen Wordperfect. I was amazed to see him demonstrate how you can throw a CD at a wall without damaging it---you could never do that with LPs!
Life takes us in different directions and Zarko (we always called him Jock, sometimes Zark) and I lost touch by the university years, but I think I speak for all of our old group when I say I’ll always remember him with great fondness. I remember him as a happy kid, very intelligent, always ready with some witty remark or out of left field joke. It doesn’t surprise me to learn what a success he made of his life. I didn’t know Zarko the man---how I wish we had kept in touch---but the boy I will never forget. Rest in peace, my old friend.
To his wife and children, I am very sorry for your loss. If the man was anything like the boy---and when is that not the case?---then he was a great man indeed."

This tribute was added by Peter Stoneberg on 7th April 2015

"I think about you often and we miss you, buddy.  I was on a road trip in a Tesla recently, and you were the first one to extol the virtues of electric cars, and Teslas in particularl to everyone that would listen.  You were so excited and evangelical about everything new and cool.  And I remembered fondly our trip from Biarritz to Nice and how much fun we had.  I hope you are driving fast cars and boats with all your new buddies upstairs.

This tribute was added by Mark Gonikberg on 7th March 2015

"Rest in peace my dear friend. Your smile will be forever in our hearts. You had touched so many so profoundly... And even when gone you are still part of our lives. Sad, sad occasion..."

This tribute was added by Danny Blake on 6th March 2015

"i cant believe its been a year since we saw you last. i think of you often. you where one of the kindest, smartest man i have ever known. it was great having coffee with you while be were painting your homes for the past decade. we will have coffee again some day. our thoughts are with your family."

This tribute was added by Kevin Surace on 6th March 2015

"It's been a year today. Hard to believe. I keep thinking you'll post some new sailing pics on Facebook! Well...maybe you will. Be well my friend."

This tribute was added by Bonnie McCoy on 6th March 2015

"The feel of the wind, the warmth of the sun, the reality dawning-an unimaginable pain, may his love for you and your love him be forever tucked away in your heart."  Dear Nellie, sending comforting prayers and gentle hugs to you and the kids."

This tribute was added by Dee (Young) Gardetti on 6th March 2015

"Dear Nellie, Sam and Vivi, Thinking about you all today. Not a day goes by without thinking about Zarko and how much he is missed. He gave me strength when i needed it the most and I am so saddened that I couldn't give it to him when he needed it. I will always be heartbroken. With love, Dee"

This tribute was added by Robb Wirts on 6th March 2015

"Dear Sam, Nellie, and Vivi,
We send our love your way today.
The Wirts Family"

This tribute was added by Danielle Safaric Ploder on 6th March 2015

"Dear Nellie, We think of you often and send our prayers of comfort.
Dear Z, not a day goes by........ Still heartbroken.
May you all find comforts among those near you to stride through today and the days to come. Xoxo"

This tribute was added by Dee (Young) Gardetti on 2nd October 2014

"Dear Nellie,  I am so sorry that I was not able to attend the Eight Bells ceremony for Z yesterday.  I was there in spirit.  I am sure it was a beautiful day, one that Z would have loved being out on the water. My heart will always have an empty spot for him.  I miss him.....there are just no words for what we have all lost.  --dee"

This tribute was added by tom Bauch on 1st October 2014


A sad day when we cannot join the boats on the bay for you. I wish I could row in the line, but am pleased to leave this thought for you, Nellie, Sam Vivi and all your many friends.

We miss you very much. The office is much emptier without your ever returning to show me how to make decent espresso. I can barely manage a row past Point Blunt without you.

Ellen, the Ganesha crew and I have all our best thoughts with you.

I am posting a picture of my only art work in 40 plus years I did a few days after we lost you. It is not clear but it quotes one of my favorite eecommings poems and asks "How do you like your blue eyce boy now Mr Death?"  Not half as much as we do.

All our love"

This tribute was added by Steve Cox on 1st October 2014

"So weird to get a birthday notice for Zarko from LinkedIn today.
I still don't know what took you Zarko, but I guess it really doesn't matter. RIP Zarko."

This tribute was added by Kathleen Birtch on 1st October 2014

"Thinking of Zarko on his birthday....Missing You."

This tribute was added by Kevin Surace on 1st October 2014

"Today is your birthday. And a great day for sailing wherever you are."

This tribute was added by Gregory Burnett on 1st October 2014


Cheers, G."

This tribute was added by Virginia Morris on 1st October 2014

"dear Nellie , Sam and Vivvie- thinking of you today and
sending love to all three- xo xo Ginio"

This tribute was added by Gregory Burnett on 1st July 2014

"Zarko...first off you were an inspiring figure in my iLife when i first met you at my father's business in Mississauga ON. CANADA circa. 1989...we shared many views of world travel within South East Asia, you helped me sort out my ambitions to finally choose the simple less complicated solution to all of my inhibitions...Furthermore, Following an awesome conversation with my 9 year old daughter this evening which involved a lot of content...I said to wouldn't believe it...but I met a guy named Zarko, friend of your uncle Steven who he studied with at Waterloo University and changed the world forever!...she did he do that?...I said...he cared!!!

Cheers,  Zarko,

Not sure if the above makes a lot of sense...but I think you know what I am getting @...Love, Greg, Sharon, Danielle & Richelle"

This tribute was added by Bob McNinch on 4th April 2014

""Zarko the Magnificent"
We first met Zarko during Telecom 88 in Geneva. He was sleeping on the floor to get everything for the NT/BNR/Apple alliance working. We loved his passion, talent, and enthusiasm so much it wasn't long before he was with us in Cupertino where he soon earned the nickname "the magnificent"
To us, this is how we will always remember him."

This tribute was added by Andy Rebele on 27th March 2014

"Zarko, your life, and the way you touched people's lives and inspired so many, are enduring examples from which to learn. Thank you for showing me how much living can fit into a life."

This tribute was added by jim fitzpatrick on 24th March 2014

"Zarko and I were standing in the school's parking lot, and he thanked me for the work we'd nearly completed--installing air conditioning units in some of the admin offices--I hadn't done much more than watch and advise (hahahahahahaha). Zarko certainly knew more than the techy guy who had delivered the units. He hopped into his Prius and waited to enter Paradise Drive. He waited. And waited. Then, at seemingly the last possible moment, he pulled directly in front of a car with the driver honking and screeching his brakes. I think profanity was involved, too. First thing when I saw Zarko the next morning I couldn't but ask, "You know, Zarko, I noticed yesterday the guy driving that car nearly collided with you when you pulled out of the parking lot..." "Yeah," he answered calmly, "they all drive too fast past the school, so I've started my own campaign to slow everyone down.""

This tribute was added by Amy Bonetti Price on 24th March 2014

"Dearest Nelli,

There are no words sweet girl. What a beautiful memorial and tribute for a beautiful man. He was so loved and touched so many people in his short life.

After I left yesterday and my heart and head were filled with Zarko, you, and the children, I thought of the poem that Meryl Steep read at the funeral in “Out of Africa”'s to Zarko.

Sending you all my love and strength,

To An Athlete Dying Young, By A.E. Housman

The time you won your town the race

We chaired you through the market-place;

Man and boy stood cheering by,

And home we brought you shoulder-high.
To-day, the road all runners come,

Shoulder-high we bring you home,

And set you at your threshold down,

Townsman of a stiller town.

Smart lad, to slip betimes away

From fields were glory does not stay

And early though the laurel grows

It withers quicker than the rose.
Eyes the shady night has shut

Cannot see the record cut,

And silence sounds no worse than cheers

After earth has stopped the ears:
Now you will not swell the rout

Of lads that wore their honours out,

Runners whom renown outran

And the name died before the man.

So set, before its echoes fade,

The fleet foot on the sill of shade,

And hold to the low lintel up

The still-defended challenge-cup.
And round that early-laurelled head

Will flock to gaze the strengthless dead,

And find unwithered on its curls

The garland briefer than a girl's."

This tribute was added by Laura New on 24th March 2014

"Although I did not know you personally you will be dearly missed by Henry Mechanical.  I appreciated your patience and understanding through the job process.  It's a rarity to find a customer like you!

This tribute was added by peter strietmann on 24th March 2014

"Fair winds and a dry berth my good man."

This tribute was added by Sarah Kerruish on 23rd March 2014

"Zarko, I have never known anyone who lived better than you. You were generous, brilliant, and passionate  - like no other. I will never forget your face - that Cheshire Cat  smile of yours when you had been up all night working on an idea or when you were sharing something you loved, as only you could. It never occurred to me that you would leave us. I always thought there was time to ask you questions and hear your stories. Today is the day when so many people will bid you farewell but you will never be forgotten. Sarah x"

This tribute was added by Elizabeth Larose on 23rd March 2014

"Zarko, his huge smile, his understanding look, his warm and generous being. Nellie, Sam and Vivi, my heart is with you all right now."

This tribute was added by Virginia Morris on 23rd March 2014

"Dear Nellie, Sam and Vivvi,
Am sending lots and lots of love to you three today at Zarko's Memorial, and sending love and light out to the spirit of Zarko, who will forever be remembered as a bright, unique, creative and loving presence in this world. Love , Ginio"

This tribute was added by Carole Birtch on 22nd March 2014

"What a terrible, terrible shock this is !!!....We have known Zarko since he was 15 years old !...He liked coming to dinner at our house...Lorne's Apple II+ computer...the fact that Lorne worked at Bell-Northern Research in Ottawa and knew all of the newest things they were developing in technology, or trying to, and loved explaining things! .... I think he kind of liked my oatmeal-chocolate chip cookies too!!! And of course his friendship with our daughters Kathleen and Patricia and all of their cute girlfriends! When Zarko's dear parents had to live out of the country in Africa because of his dad's job, he came and lived with us to finish his High School ... I remember him going to a Canada wide science fair in Halifax and flying back with a live Lobster in water in a plastic bag under his jacket for me!.... Yuk!!!...How proud he was getting his first summer job at Bell-Northern Research...first car ...first new car ...being accepted at Waterloo University etc., etc.!! He really did become one of the family....helping Kathleen leave home and move into residence at Ottawa U so she wouldn't be embarrassed if I started  crying when I had to say good-bye!!! Flying from  California all the way to Côte d'Ivoire for Patricia's wedding in 1995. We have so many wonderful memories of Zarko!.....always so thoughtful, kind, polite, and that smile........everyone loved him!!!!!    Our love, Hugs and deepest Sympathy to all of the Draganics!!"

This tribute was added by Greg & Debbie Dorland on 22nd March 2014

""To live is the rarest thing in the world….Most people exist, that is
all"  Oscar Wilde

Your life was a storybook tale.  A common thread in everyone's memory is how very kind, gentle and unassuming you were with your engaging smile and twinkle in your eyes.  Nothing average about you and the life you leave behind.  We wish that everyone left here could have pulled you back collectively from the darkness.  Such a tragic ending to an incredibly gifted life…our hearts are breaking for Nellie, Sam & Vivvi…."

This tribute was added by Ray Rischpater on 22nd March 2014

"My condolences to all of Zarko's friends and family --- he was memorable, kind, witty, and intelligent. Although I did not know Zarko well, I am thankful for the time we spent together. Like many, I first met Zarko during General Magic's heyday, and appreciated the time that we worked together."

This tribute was added by Jim White on 22nd March 2014

"I knew Zarko at General Magic. We were on different engineering teams and so never worked together closely. Still, besides his enormous talent, I'll always remember his warm smile and gentle manner. A great loss."

This tribute was added by Doug Steedman on 22nd March 2014

"I remember so many things about Zarko from General Magic days. His customized cubicle with sleeping accommodations. Draeger’s sourdough cheese bread: “ah, this is the good stuff”. Him recording juicy bits from the group meetings and playing them back as Magic Cap sounds. The Boxster and Ducati appearing in the parking lot. Most of all, his kindness and friendliness. No gnarly technical problem fazed him. My favorite quote, when someone said they were waiting for documentation before they could proceed with a task, “you don’t need a manual, just make it work!”. The image I have of Zarko is that he could indeed force undocumented and recalcitrant pieces of technology to operate by the sheer force of his will. I have thought of him frequently over the intervening years, but never got back in touch, to my regret. My condolences to his loved ones for their terrible loss."

This tribute was added by Boris Fölsch on 21st March 2014

"Zarko, thank you for generously sharing your time, for the thoughtful advice you gave and for infusing our time at General Magic with fun. Your winning attitude was infectious. I wish your family the best."

This tribute was added by Kevin Surace on 21st March 2014

" were an amazing human. I was fortunate that you reported to me at General Magic, and that we came up with a way to create AltoComm and eventually spin it out as your own company to run with. We had fun with that process and became friends.
You were smart, fun, full of life.
May you continue that love of life in your next life and beyond. And I certainly hope to meet again wherever and whenever that is."

This tribute was added by Mark Leonard on 20th March 2014

"I just learned about Zarko's passing, and like so many others, am  stunned and saddened. I didn't know Zarko well, but really enjoyed working with him on the water during the lead up to AC34. He was cheerful, smart, athletic, knowledgeable, and just plain fun. My friends who knew Zarko well always had glowing words to say about him. What a loss. Nellie, I don't know if there are any words or actions any of us could express that could help you and the boys heal, but you are clearly surrounded by a community who is grieving with you, and who would do anything for you."

This tribute was added by Kathleen Birtch on 19th March 2014

"Words cannot express the depth of my sorrow. The world has lost a wonderful human being - I loved Zarko like a brother. From way back in highschool, Zarko lived with us in Brockville on Meighen Cres. and became a part of our family. We feel blessed to have been able to spend so many fun years together. I remember your honor roll days - competing with Andrew Ku for the top %, TISS football days, science fair fame, you sailing the 1000 Islands, your years at the BYC, your jokes and your forever inquisitive mind! I remember your 1st car - you & Dad had matching VW Rabbit diesels! And then the Brand new Toyota Celica! You were so proud! :) Through University days and your time in Ottawa at BNR...the Ivory Coast trip for Patricia's wedding, and cottage days on Bass Lake. Then off to Cali you went...your dream - to the Silicon Valley, the success you had at such a young age. You were an inspiration to everyone you met. I still can't comprehend that you are gone. You will forever live in our hearts Zark! My heart goes out to your beautiful wife, your sweet little daughter, Sam, your parents, Robin, Nina and all of your friends (Hank you are in my prayers) and all of your extended family around the world. So many happy memories! Rest in Peace Zarko."

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This memorial is administered by:

Bruce Leak
James Joaquin
Paul Mercer


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