Robert Benjamin Zarlingo
Lifetime Silt resident Robert Benjamin Zarlingo passed peacefully in the company of his family on September 14, 2016. He was born on December 5, 1929, to Benjamin Zarlingo and Elizabeth Cozza. He attended Silt schools through high school graduation. He was drafted into the US Army, and after discharge came home to partner with his parents in their sheep ranching and farming. Taking advantage of Robert’s experience in the military, they purchased a bulldozer.
In 1955, Robert married DeeDee Antonelli, his farm wife and dancing partner. Over the next four years, they were blessed with twin daughters and two sons. Through the 1960’s, the family continued farming, ranching, dozer work, grain harvesting, and custom farming with their sons.
With his friend and lawyer Frank Delaney, Robert had a crucial role in the Farmers Irrigation Company’s precedent-setting lawsuit before the Colorado Supreme Court. The company successfully sued the State for polluting Rifle Creek and its flow to Harvey Gap Reservoir.
The family sold the Flying Cloud ranch in 1973 and built a house on the Coleman place, just north of Silt, where he and DeDe still live. In 1974, Robert and DeDe bought the Silt Market, and in 1979 they started HyWay Feed. Robert continued farming and dozer work. After selling HyWay Feed, Dad concentrated on farm, family, and friends.
Robert was an honest, hardworking farmer, a loyal and dedicated husband and a devoted, caring father. He was preceded in death by his parents, and by sisters Jean and Mary. He is survived by his life mate DeeDee, their children: Carol (Bill) Wilson, Judy (Dennis) Graves, Ben (Allison Quinn) and Tony, along with his sister Phyllis Henry, nephew Robert (Jean) Slaven, nieces Cathy (Russ) Marsh, Gayl (John) Cherry. Robert and DeeDee cherished their seven grandchildren.
Memorial services will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations in support of the Highland Cemetery through the City of New Castle.
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