Production and amusement park designer and actor Charles M. Zacha Jr. died June 8 of liver cancer in Shady Cove, Ore. He was 86.
Born in Moberly, Mo., he served in the Army Air Corps. During WWII and moved to the west coast in the early 1950s. Using the name Paul Serra, he began acting in television, and appeared in shows including “Perry Mason” and “Bachelor Father.”
Zacha used his architectural and engineering background and began working with Disney to help create attractions such as Main Street USA, Pirates of The Caribbean, New Orleans Town Square, It’s A Small World and The Haunted Mansion.
He also worked on the original Pacific Ocean Park (POP) in 1958 — a joint venture between CBS and Santa Anita Park, designed to compete with Disneyland.
Zacha went on to work at MGM and Fox as head facilities engineer. He later became a member of the set designers union and worked as production designer and art director on televisions shows such as “Dallas,” “Dynasty” and “Knot’s Landing.”
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Loretta; two sons; three daughters; nine grandchildren; one great grandchild and two brothers.
Donations may be made to Providence Hospice, 940 Royal Ave., Suite 410, Medford, Or. 97504.