Stanley Peter Zola was born on 5 July 1904, in Taunton, Massachusetts, son of Joseph F. and Magdelena (Dziekan) Zola, both natives of Poland. He lived in Utica, New York, until he was eleven, then moved to Two Rivers, Wisconsin, where he graduated from Washington High School in 1923. Graduated Cum Laude from the University of Wisconsin, he received the degree of Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1927. At the latter he was a member of the Track and Cross Country Teams, received the major “W” award, and was a member of the Big “10” Championship Team – Cross Country in 1926.
Completing the Reserve Officers Training course in Field Artillery at the University as Cadet Major, he was commissioned Second Lieutenant in the Field Artillery Reserve on 20 June 1927. He resigned his commission in the Army on 22 June 1936 to accept commission as Lieutenant in the Civil Engineer Corps of the US Naval Reserve on 1 July 1936. Through subsequent promotions, and his transfer from the Reserve to the US Navy on 3 October 1936, he attained the rank of Captain, CEC, US Navy, to date from 20 March 1945.
As a civilian, before reporting for active duty in January 1941, he was Division Manager for Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company, Milwaukee Division. He has been registered as Professional Engineer in the State of Wisconsin since 1932.
Reporting to the Bureau of Yards and Docks, Navy Department, Washington, DC, on 20 January 1941, he was detached a week later with orders to Trinidad, British West Indies, for duty in connection with construction of the Advanced Base there. From February 1 to March 10 of that year, he was Officer in Charge of Construction, St. Lucia Naval Air Station ($2,500,000 project), and from 21 April 1941 to September 1942, he was Resident Officer in Charge of Construction at Trinidad (a $60,000,000 project).
He was appointed Acting Officer in Charge of Construction, Trinidad and British Guiana 18 September 1942, and on 26 June 1923, was designated Assistant Public Works Officer, Trinidad Sector (including Trinidad, St. Lucia, British West Indies, British Guiana, Aruba and Curacao). He left Trinidad for the United States on 10 February 1944, and from 20 March of that year until the cessation of hostilities in August 1945, he was Assistant Public Works Officer at the Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, Virginia.
A tour of duty as Public Works Officer at the US Naval Training Center, Great Lakes, Illinois including duty additionally, as Public Works Officer of the Naval Hospital there, and with the Administrative Command. He remained there after his transfer to the US Navy in 1946, until 15 December 1947. On 28 January 1948 he reported for duty as Public Works Officer for the Naval Shipyard, Pearl Harbor, TH., and under orders of 9 March 1950, returned to the United States for duty in the same capacity at the New York Naval Shipyard, Brooklyn. In March 1952 he was District Public Works Officer, Sixth Naval District, Headquarters in Charleston, South Carolina.
Captain Zola had the America Defense Service Medal; American Campaign Medal; the World War II Victory Medal; and the National Defense Service Medal. He was also entitled to the Naval Reserve Medal, for ten years’ service.
Captain Zola was a member of the American Society of Military Engineers; Scabbard and Blade (honorary military fraternity); Wisconsin Alumni Association; and the Milwaukee “W” club. He passed away 7 February 1988.