Dixie Ann Zinnecker
March 12, 2007

An article honoring Dixie was published on March 20, 2007 in theeagle.com, 2000 - 2008 The Bryan-College Station Eagle. The articvle is copied below in case the link becomes unavailable at some point in the future.


A&M loses a tough, dedicated mother

Mothers can be fiercely protective of their children, no matter how old their sons or daughters might be. They spend the first 18 or 20 years of their children's life preparing them to leave the nest, to become productive adults.

But let something happen to a child, and Mom is there to protect, to rebuild, to nurture the child in every way possible.

Such was the case with Dixie Ann Zinnecker of Richardson. Sometime in the early morning hours of Nov. 18, 1999, she received word that her son, John Comstock, then 18, had been severely injured when bonfire, that most cherished of Texas A&M traditions, collapsed. Comstock was the last survivor pulled from the pile of huge logs - and the most severely injured.

Twelve students and former students were killed that horrible morning and for weeks it looked like Comstock might be No. 13. He underwent repeated surgeries, lost a leg above the knee. At one time, his heart stopped for 10 long minutes.

He was and still is a fighter. Comstock is living in College Station, taking classes at his beloved Texas A&M.

Comstock didn't fight the fight alone, however. He had the tremendous support of a loving family, especially his mother, who simply wouldn't let him give up. Zinnecker stayed in the family's recreational vehicle in the parking lot of the College Station Medical Center so she could be close to her son, pushing him, pleading with him, demanding that he get better. Miraculously, he did.

Life will never again be easy for John Comstock. He will be dealing with his grievous injuries forever. Through it all, though, Zinnecker was with him, telling him that he could do it, could have a full life.

Last week, Dixie Ann Zinnecker died at her Richardson home. She leaves a legacy of love, laughter and determination. She also leaves three children, including John Comstock, who has fought long and hard, until now always with his wonderful mother at his side.

We remember John Comstock and his family in our prayers. And we think of our mothers and realize how far we have come because of them.