Ziegler was known for his soothing treatment of patients, medical students, residents in training, and members of his faculty. He had extensive training for his multifaceted career. Born in Omaha, Nebraska, he went east to Harvard College and graduated magna cum laude (1941); he then went to Harvard Medical School (1941-1945). He interned in medicine at the Boston City Hospital in 1945-1946, receiving neurology training from Derek Denny-Brown, MD. After 4 months in neurology, his residency training was interrupted by World War II service in the Navy—first in Bethesda, then in San Diego (1946-1948). He then went to the New York Neurological Institute at the Columbia University Medical Center (1948-1951) to resume neurology training under H. Houston Merritt, MD, who appointed Ziegler as chief resident in 1950-1951. Among his fellow trainees were the late Leonard Berg, MD, Robert A. Fishman, MD, Sid Gilman, MD, Donald H. Harter, MD, Christian Herrmann, MD, T. R. Johns, MD, Audrey S. Penn, MD, Lewis P. Rowland, MD, Frank Yatsu, MD, and neurosurgeon Bernard Susman, MD.