Ann Zachariasen from Facing HomelessnessFrom Rex Holbein at Facing Homelessness, November 20, 2015:

Our dear friend Ann Zachariasen was found dead under the Ballard Bridge yesterday, my heart, and everyone’s heart that had the pleasure of Ann’s LOVE, is screaming with sadness.

There is nothing that can be written here that will convey the loss of no longer having Ann here with us, she touched so many with her beautiful light, her open honest way, sharing with you exactly who she is, leading with courage as she confronted what was a life of homelessness, a life of constant struggle.

Ann was a most courageous and beautifully spirited person.

She grew up in Ballard, lived there her entire life, a week ago she received permanent housing at the Nyer Urness House in Ballard, a tremendous life moment for her, making the news of her death that much more startling, that much more tragic.

Ann battled substance abuse but she rose above it to spend time with her daughter and two grandchildren, they were her strength and LOVE for getting clean. We remember the day Ann brought both grandchildren to the office, spending the day doing art and goofing around, it was all beautiful, all so loving.

I remember the time Ann came to the Fremont office, a few days before Christmas, crying in tears, the toys she had put together for both of her grandchildren had been stolen, she was frantic to find something; as the Christmas spirit would have it, someone had donated a number of toys and children clothes just that morning, Ann left with her arms full, so grateful, so very happy.

There are countless memories; Ann’s beautiful way was a very important part of our Homeless in Seattle FAMILY.

Ann came to all of our events, all of them, from sharing smiles at the FEEL GOOD project, to the STREET HEART project where she sat next to Mari&Adam when they purchased the painting of her; to meetings along North Northlake Way involving the RVs scheduled to be towed; to the time she showed up at our office with a Christmas wreath she had made to hang on our office door; or the crazy time she stripped down to underwear to jump in the canal and get Steve Strukoff’s bike that had been thrown in; or all the frenzied moments when her RV had been impounded; and all the LOVE moments for Hydro, and the stress worries too over Hydro, like when Ann was in jail for months, calming only when she found how very beautifully Mari&Adam were giving care to Hydro; or how Ann always ALWAYS let me photograph her, and how enchanted I was each time with how beautiful she was; and all the other little moments when Ann would smile or laugh or share something of herself, she was simply so very TREMENDOUS.

We loveLOVE you Ann; our lives were enriched by sharing time with you, thank you for the genuine friendship you gave to so many in this caring community, to those living inside and outside.

A community LOVE to Ann’s daughter Debbie, to her beautiful grandchildren, and to the rest of her family. Rest in Peace Ann.

Ballard neighborhood | Rex


Ann was also beloved at Bridge Care Center in Ballard, and at WHEEL.

Ann’s Leaf is placed at Ballard Commons Park. If you have photos or memories of Ann, please post a comment.


Featured Leaf of Remembrance November 2016

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Related Sites
  • Homeless Remembrance Project The main site of the Homeless Remembrance Project, with much more about the Tree of Life.
  • Mary's Place The only day center where homeless women can go with their children & co-sponsor of Women in Black.
  • WHEEL WHEEL (Women’s Housing, Equality & Enhancement League) is a grassroots organizing effort of homeless women.