It is with shock and great sadness that we share news of the passing of one of our own. Sherman “Sherm” Van Zee first appeared on the USP stage in the 2006 production of “The Christmas Post” in which he played the lovable “Brother Sam.” A man of considerable talent and a love of music, he was Music Director for USP’s 2007 production of “Music Man.” Many will remember his iconic pose standing with his head against a tree when he played Carl Bolton in 2007’s “Morning’s at Seven.” He also played a disgruntled Pella settler, Teunis, in the 2009 Tulip Time production “Letters from Pella.”
We remember Sherm as a gentle soul with a sweet spirit. He was beloved by all who worked with him. In recent years Sherm moved to Prairie City to live with and care for his aging parents. At September’s monthly meeting of USP, Pat Van Zante had announced that Sherm had agreed to work with her as Music Director on an upcoming USP musical production. He will be certainly missed both on and off the stage.
Sherm died on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines. Funeral services for Sherm will be Saturday, September 21, 11:00 a.m. at the First Reformed Church in Prairie City. A luncheon will follow.