Skip to content

Obituary... John Zurik



John Zurik, age 51 of Rockwall, Tex., passed away October 31. Once described by the Canadian press as “The Texan,” John Krump Zurik showed a deceivingly insouciant demeanor when he directed television commercials north of the border. But it was also noted that he was “a serious directorial talent who displayed an ease with dialogue direction, a strong storytelling style, and a rare bent for the absurd.”

Zurik’s directorial career began in 1979 and lasted for more than 20 years. During that time he won numerous industry accolades. He actually began his work in advertising as an illustrator. His talent in art direction served him well on the set where he was known for his straightforward simplicity and integrity.

That talent also served him well beyond the television medium. For Zurik was more than a bit of a Renaissance Man. He also expressed himself through the written word, the artist’s canvas and the piano keyboard. Later in his life he even teamed with his wife, Maryta Montgomery, to create the Zurik Collection of fine jewelry, expanding his repertoire to gold, silver and precious gems.

Zurik's gentle manner and soft-spoken conversation belied a whirlwind of artistic notions. He displayed an artist’s curiosity and gift coupled with a businessman’s insight into what works. The result, whether on film or in a fine piece of jewelry, brought delight to everyone who knew him.

In addition to his artistic endeavors, Zurik was a great supporter of his wife’s show ring activities. He was ringside leading the cheering section for such stars as Harlem’s Half Moon, Summer Daydream, and Mohegan Sun who were shown under the direction of Biggins Stable.

He is survived by his devoted wife Maryta Montgomery; their son, Brian Worsham; daughter-in-law Shelly; three grandchildren who called him “G’john”; his parents Don and Jean Ann Krump and two sisters.

Funeral services were held November 6 at Fellowship Bible Church in Plano, Tex.Interment followed in Rest Haven Memorial Park. Memorial donations will be accepted to Concerns of Police Survivors, P.O. Box 3199, Camdenton, Mo., 65020 in honor of the special relationship of his son Brian.

More Stories

  • **Updated Event Cancellations

    Saddle Horse Report will provide daily updates to the list of canceled and postponed horse events. Read More
  • A Blast From The Past

    Saddle Horse Report is pleased to bring you a series of past feature stories on some of the greats of our sport. Please enjoy this walk down memory lane. Read More
  • UPHA Maria Knight Memorial Scholarship; Up to $10,000 Offered

    The UPHA Maria Knight Scholarship was established to honor UPHA Professional, Maria Knight and her commitment to providing a college education for her daughter... Read More
  • From the Desk of Marty Schaffel: Acts of Courage

    I was never prouder to be a member of our association than when I saw the statement that was signed by so many of our members. Clearly, these are difficult times. Tough decisions have to be made. What is reassuring to me is that people are making those decisions and are acting with courage. Read More
  • American Saddlebred Museum Launches Educational Resources & Movie Club

    The American Saddlebred Museum has added online resources and educational offerings to its website. These resources include reading lists, activity sheets, coloring pages and writing prompts. Resources range from fun activities to true educational resources for educators. New activities will be added regularly to keep the page fresh and young minds active!   Read More
  • A Letter To UPHA Membership

    I hope this email finds you healthy and safe. These are frightening times for all. Our membership is unique: We are not just working to keep our families and staff safe; we are also tasked with providing the highest level of care for our horses and ponies. Read More
  • American Saddlebred Museum – April 2020

    The Museum's first Movie Club meeting was a big success! Don't miss our next installment on April 11 at 3:00 p.m. EST when we will discuss Secretariat! Wondering how it works? The concept is similar to a book club, but you watch a movie instead of reading a book. Read More
  • JLC Launches Horsemen’s Relief Fund and JLCCares.com

    The Joint Leadership Council (JLC) is taking an active role in assisting the trotting breed community during the COVID-19 pandemic by launching a Horsemen’s Relief Fund through the UPHA Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization. The JLC also has launched a website to help horsemen find federal assistance as well.  Read More
  • Ten Years Ago - Pro-Am

    We won’t be heading to Pro-Am this week, so let’s reminisce about some of the memories. Here are some highlights from 2010 and you can share your memories... Read More
  • Foals N Focus – Week 2

    Again, one of the most enjoyable parts of this past week was reviewing all the #foalsNfocus pictures that were submitted.Foals mean hope and the future and we all need that right now... Read More