Posted by: Tina M | 23 November , 2009

To take the time to remember.

I was watching one of my favorite shows “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” and before the credits began to roll there was a short “In Memory of” that caught my eye. It was a man named David M. Zdunich with a face that immediately caught my eye.

It made me think about all the rest of us regular day people who make our marks on the world but on a much smaller level. I think it’s amazing that with current technology we can stumble upon someone’s whole world, and In Memory, I decided to see what I could find.

The first information I found related to his experience on It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. It said that “This episode is dedicated to the loving memory of David Zdunich who passed away in 2009. He played Ernie, a frequent patron of Paddy’s pub. His first appearance on the show was in the episode, “Sweet Dee’s Dating a Retarded Person.”

He also made an appearance on an episode where Paddy’s earns the record of the “Worst Bar in Philadelphia.”

I continued looking and couldn’t find much. I stumbled upon an alumni paper from Otis

Terrance David Zdunich

1998, Communication Arts

Producer and performer.

It’s difficult to tell if it’s the same person. . .

However, if it IS the same person, then he’s done some amazing work.

Repo Man. The Genetic Rock Opera.

REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA is the brainchild of Darren Smith and Terrance Zdunich. The two began performing what they called ten-minute operas at coffee shops and rock clubs in Los Angeles in 2000. One of those short pieces, The Necromerchant’s Debt, a futuristic tale involving a graverobber, was the seed that grew into REPO! Zdunich says that “the original GraveRobber was a character very similar to the one I’m playing now in that he was this rogue who lived on the outskirts of society. He was making a social commentary about what he’d see in the graveyard. One of the things that he saw was a repo man who would repossess body organs that were bought on credit – that ten-minute story ended up evolving to where the GraveRobber became indebted to the Repo Man. When we performed it the audience reception to that story was the strongest of all the ten-minute operas we had done, so we thought ‘Let’s make it bigger!'”

It was during the process of staging and performing the show in New York and L.A. that Smith and Zdunich were able to develop the story, characters and songs that would later become the film REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA.

The movie looks absolutely amazing. Check out Repo! The Genetic Opera:

I put it on my Netflix queue.

In the end, I’m not sure if this is the same person. Either way, I spent some time today trying to find a piece of someone’s life so that I might pay them my respects. I think that it’s a worthy cause.


  1. I always always love following the media bread crumb trail to things like this. It makes me believe that tools like the internet aren’t inherently bad and can enrich our lives so much if we use them well. Great find!

  2. Terrance (the one who wrote Repo! The Genetic Opera) is the son of David.

  3. David Zdunich was my uncle. My mother is Mary Zdunich and he was a beloved uncle, brother, father, son and an all around amazing human. We miss him terribly and tonight we were watching old episodes of “Its always sunny” and I stumbled upon this, my Mom and I are touched. Who ever you are thank you for taking the time to do this.
    All the best-

    • Thank you for posting. It’s a great privilege to hear from you about your family. Sending warm thoughts to you and yours. ❤

      • Do not hesitate to continue to post! It was a lovely surprise to read all of that

  4. Just a note to Sarah and the family. I was binge watching “Its always sunny” on netflix and saw the in honor comment at the end of season 5 episode 8 and researched him also and this is eight years later. Interest in him and his acting is living on. Happy holidays.

    • Oh this just warmed my heart. I can’t wait to share with the rest of our family. We were just talking about Uncle Dave today! Go figure I’d get a message like this. How cool. Keep in touch we love to hear this kind of stuff. Happy holiday’s to you and yours!

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