Alma Lee Casey Winkler (2018-12-27 15:54:51)

Alma Lee Casey Winkler, 91, died on December 21, at her home in Boone, N.C

Her strong faith gave her comfort and strength, especially as her health declined. She was surrounded by family when she passed.

She treasured each visit, call and card from family and friends, and photos of the grand and great grandchildren brought a grin to her face or a twinkle to her eye every time.

Alma loved her family and home. She created an open household that welcomed a steady stream of neighbors and friends in addition to all the relatives. She hated snow, though she lived in Boone for 65 years. She was funny, kind and sassy, and would definitely let you know what she thought.

Born in Wilkes County, N.C., on February 12,1927, Alma was raised on a farm in Cycle community where she, sister “Tink,” parents John and Maud Casey, and resident-aunt, Addie Casey, inhabited a farm house ringed by porches and topped by a pointy, silver tin room. The extended Casey family continued to get together at the farm until the late 1980s, and Alma and Tink’s families were close spending beach vacations together most summers for several decades.

After graduating from Ronda High School, Alma attended Mars Hill College and Appalachian State Teacher’s College. She met the love or her life, James Wright Winkler, on the day she moved into a room in James Bennett and Carrie Wright Winkler’s family home on Blowing Rock Road in Boone. Alma was a boarder in the Winkler home while she took summer-school classes. James Wright Winkler asked her to walk up to campus the next evening. Within six weeks the two planned to be married.

Alma and Jim married in 1950 and raised four children in the house they built on Horn-in-the West Drive about a mile from James and Carrie Winkler’s family home. Alma and Jim hosted many backyard barbecues with relatives and friends from Boone and a dozen or so Thomason relatives from Hickory, N.C. By the 1970’s another arm of the extended family developed as Alma’s small den was frequently filled with boys from the neighborhood, high school swim team buddies and Alma’s mother. They played basketball, baked cookies, hung out and visited Alma throughout her life.

As an adult, Alma was a member of the Boone United Methodist Church. She volunteered in the church office and took special pride in her long service as membership secretary, keeping track of comings and goings, births and deaths.

Alma was well known in the Watauga County community and a longstanding member of the Friday Afternoon Club, a 100-year old women’s club that fosters friendship among descendants of the Watauga County ladies who formed the group as a sewing club in 1918.

After the death of her husband Jim in 1990, eventually Alma began a new episode of life traveling all over the world with old friends from the ASU alumni association and new friends as well. Alma and dear friend, Mariann Clawson amused their traveling companions and were know as “the outlaws” for their fun-loving antics. Apparently they broke a few rules.

Alma will be dearly missed and fondly remembered by her children and their families: Pamela Winkler of Blowing Rock, Judith Winkler and Gilbert Jackson of Durham, J.C. and Suzette Winkler of Asheboro, and David and Marcia Winkler of Blowing Rock, grandchildren Johnny Bower, Addie McClain, Jon Jackson, Alice Jackson, Chris Winkler, Carrie Winkler, Jonathan Krause and Sarah Winkler. She is also survived by great grandchildren Tilley Bower and Jackson McClain, sister Sara (Tink) Wilkinson of Mooresville N.C. and her family and the extended Thomason family.

The family deeply appreciates the love, prayers, and support of friends whose love carried Alma forward during the last months of her life. The outpouring of love through notes, calls, visits and Christmas cards was appreciated by Alma and the family. We are extremely thankful for the team of caregivers who made it possible for Alma to spend her final days at home, surrounded by family.

The family appreciates remembrances in the form of flowers or donations to the Boone United Methodist Church.

Funeral services for Alma Winkler will be conducted Friday afternoon, December 28, 2018, at 2:00 o'clock, at Boone United Methodist Church. The body will lie in state, at the church, from 1:00 until 2:00 o'clock. Burial will follow in Boone City Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Thursday evening, from 6:30 until 8:00 o'clock, at Hampton Funeral Service.

The family appreciates remembrances in the form of flowers or donations to the Boone United Methodist Church.

Online condolences may be sent to the Winkler family at

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.