Obituary of Donna Mae Winkelman
Donna Mae West was born on December 10, 1926, in Ottawa Lake, Michigan. The only child born from the union of Ralph West and Hattie (Olrich) West; she was raised on the family farm. She acquired her education from the Blissfield School system, graduating with the class of 1944.
Donna married the love of her life: Wesley Winkelman on September 9, 1945 and the couple was blessed with the birth of three daughters and a son. She cared for the needs of her household as a homemaker, also supporting her husband in the role of a farmer’s wife without hesitation. As a mother, Donna’s love knew no bounds. She poured her heart and soul into raising her children, instilling in them the values of kindness, hard work, and perseverance. Her devotion to her family was unmatched, and she took great pride in being there for her children, every step of the way. During her younger years, Donna embraced the spirit of adventure. She was fond of camping and embarking on road trips across the United States, with her most treasured journeys being the road trip to Alaska with her beloved husband, vacationing in Hawaii and traveling to the Holy Land.
One of Donna's passions was her hobby of crocheting beautiful afghans. With skilled hands and a creative mind, she painstakingly crafted countless works of art that brought warmth and comfort to many family members and close friends. Donna also found enjoyment in card games. Playing hearts, solitaire, and euchre with loved ones brought delight and camaraderie into her life. Whether in Florida or at home, she cherished these moments.
A true bookworm at heart, Donna found solace in the pages of historical literature. She immersed herself in captivating stories that transported her to different eras and places. As an avid reader, she had a discerning taste; the books she cherished were mainly historical, but she would also be seen flipping the pages of one that was pure and wholesome.
Donna's faith was an integral part of her life and she expressed her devotion to St. John Lutheran Church in Dundee through active participation in WELCA and their various women’s circles. She also taught Sunday School for many years. She lent a helping hand to her church’s God Works Meal program, preparing meals and desserts for those in need. Pies of all kinds were her specialty and were enjoyed and cherished by not only the church community, but by her family and friends. She continued making delicious pies as recently as this month.
With a sharp and agile mind, Donna remained curious and engaged. She delighted in watching Hallmark Christmas movies, warming her heart during the holiday season. However, since her love for these movies was unmatched, she recently lamented that their magic should most likely be reserved for the appropriate time of year and not in July.
Donna Mae Winkelman, age 96, of Dundee, passed away peacefully near dawn on Friday, July 14, 2023, at Aspen Grove Assisted Living in Lambertville. She had been under the care of Elara Caring Hospice. Her passing was preceded by her parents and her husband of nearly sixty-six years: Wesley.
To cherish her memory, she leaves four children: Diane (Tom) Harmer and Dennis (Laura) Winkelman both of Cape Coral, Florida, Wendy (Mike) Stasko of Dundee, Michigan, and Wanda (Chuck) Reed of Mazon, Illinois; eight grandchildren; twelve great grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.
Friends may gather on Saturday: September 9, 2023, from 10:00 AM until 11:00 AM at St. John Lutheran Church; 416 Riley Street, Dundee, Michigan 48131. A Funeral Service Celebrating Her Life will follow at 11:00 AM, also at St. John’s. A private burial of her cremated remains will take place at Maple Grove Cemetery, Dundee. Her care has been entrusted to Merkle Funeral Service, Dundee; 297 Tecumseh Street, Dundee, Michigan 48131 (734) 529-3156. Cremation has taken place through the on-site crematory, Covenant Cremation of Erie, Michigan.
Memorial contributions are suggested to St. John Lutheran Church or Elara Caring Hospice of Adrian, Michigan. Online guests may visit www.merklefs.com to leave words of inspiration and comfort or to share a photo.
The family wishes to express their deepest gratitude for the exceptional commitment and invaluable care that was provided to their mother by Stephanie and Tracy.