Charles Winchell Profile Photo
1932 Charles 2017

Charles Winchell

October 2, 1932 — June 7, 2017

Charles Rondel Winchell, 83, of Caring Acres in Anita, IA, passed away Wednesday, June 7, 2017, at Bergen Mercy hospital in Omaha, NE.

Charles was born October 2, 1932, in a three room house, seven miles southwest of Chariton, IA, to Benjamin and Zula (Davenport) Winchell. He was the third of four children, and the only son to Ben and Zula. At the age of four, the family moved to a 160 acre farm outside of Humeston, IA.

Charles was baptized at an early age at Eden Baptist Church in Derby, IA. He attended Lucern School, a one room school house, in rural Humeston. He graduated from Cambria High School in 1950, in a class of thirteen. In high school, he played guard on the basketball team and centerfield on the baseball team.

After high school, Charles helped his parents farm until 1955 when he moved to southern California. There, he met Carolie Ann Magill, and they were married February 24, 1957. Charles and Carol returned to Humeston where he farmed a few years before returning to California where his excellent craftsmanship skills in carpentry and mechanics led him to some rewarding jobs. They had four daughters, Julie Ann, Rebecca Reina, Susan Marie and Nancy Joanna.

In California, Charles worked for the railroad, then Freightliner. In 1970, the family relocated to western Montana. There, Charles worked for a CAT dealership, a logging company, built homes on a Reservation, worked on the construction of Libby Dam, and managed a mountain cattle ranch.

In 1976, Charles and family completed the circle, and returned to Humeston, IA. In Humeston, Charles managed the Skelly Gas Station for many years, then worked for Morman Trail Schools as bus mechanic and transportation director.

After retirement, Charles and Carol owned the Yellow Daisy Antique Store in Humeston and enjoyed traveling around the Midwest selling antiques and collectibles at flea markets.

Charles never met a stranger and was at home in any small town café or truck stop. He loved drinking coffee and visiting with family and friends, telling stories about life on the farm following the great depression, attending a one room schoolhouse and especially doing flea markets. Before going completely blind in the late 1990s, Charles enjoyed reading Louis L’amour books, watching John Wayne movies, and working jigsaw puzzles during the long winter months. His greatest passion, however, was using his carpentry skills to build furniture for his wife and daughters for Christmas, as well as toys for the grandkids. In recent years, Charles has enjoyed listening to Iowa Hawkeye football and basketball, and St. Louis Cardinal baseball on the radio.

Those who preceded him in death were his infant daughter, Julie Ann; parents, Ben and Zula; wife, Carolie; daughters, Nancy Fishel and Susan Schultz; and sister, Mary Jean (William) Exley.

Charles is survived by his daughter, Rebecca Sponsler of Atlantic, IA; sister, Emily (Cliff) Willeen Miller Green of Des Moines, IA; seven grandchildren, Ben (Ashley) Sponsler of Ankeny, IA, Emily Sponsler of Pleasant Hill, IA, Brandon (Renee) Shultz of Prairie Village, KS, Jonathan Shultz of Tulsa, OK, Robert Shultz of KS, Thomas Shultz of Lenexa, KS and Gary Fishel, Jr. of CO; seven great-grandchildren; nieces, Elizabeth Ousley of Peoria, AZ, Judy (Gunner) Puldas of Lucerne Valley, CA, Joy (Rodney) Einspah of Omaha, NE; nephew, Tim Exley of Mission Viejo, California; and sister-in-law, Karen (Greg) Hope of Hesperia, CA.

Charles will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him. In honor of Charles’ wishes, he has been laid to rest at Cambria Cemetery in Cambria, IA. A graveside memorial is planned for Saturday, July 15, 2017, at 2:00 p.m. at the Cambria Cemetery in Cambria, Iowa.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Charles Winchell, please visit our flower store.


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