Christian 01

Donald Martin Winger

June 26, 1927 ~ February 3, 2024 (age 96) 96 Years Old
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Donald Winger Obituary

Donald “Don” Martin Winger entered into eternity on February 3, 2024.  Don lived on earth to the blessed age of 96 and a half years.  Nearly to the end, he made many people smile.  Early on the morning of February 3, 2024, he passed peacefully in his sleep and went home to the arms of his Savior where he will worship for all eternity.  

Donald was born on June 26, 1927, in Beloit, Wisconsin to Martin and Adeline Winger.   He had one younger sister named Alice. 

Don grew up in Wisconsin.   As a young man, he was taught by his dad to be a snow ski jumper.  He learned about Jesus from his mother and shared that he was a believer from a very young age.   As an adolescent, he was baptized by Reverend Fish in Turtle Creek. 

Following high school, he spent a year in the Army during World War II from 1945-1946 as a dental assistant.  

He entered college after discharge from the Army at Walla Walla University in College Place, Washington where his career intentions changed from dentistry to a call to ministry with the pursuit of a degree in theology.

In September 1949, Norma Peterson moved to Walla Walla College.  At this time, Don was a senior theology student.  During introductions at a meal in the dining hall, Norma was surprised to learn how much Don already knew about her since they had not yet met before.   A few days later, Don asked Norma on a Saturday night date.   Norma already had a commitment that Saturday so she declined and added, “but there are other Saturday nights.”   And so it began…

On New Year’s Eve 1949, after a brief courtship, Don and Norma were engaged.  They were married on July 9, 1950, at the Portland Montavilla Adventist Church. 

After graduation, Don was awaiting a call to ministry however the competition was fierce.  Don and Norma prepared to relocate to Washington D.C. where Don would pursue a Master’s Degree to increase his opportunities for placement. 

In 1951, Don took what would become an 8-year break from completing his Master’s and moved with Norma to Portales, New Mexico to teach at a 10 grade church school.

Don gave his first sermon in denominational employ in the church at Portales and then forty years later, in 1991, he gave his last sermon there before retirement. 

In those 40 years of ministry, Don first began as a singing evangelist duo with Norma and worked with the youth in the Arkansas and Louisiana camp meeting.  His first official pastorate was in Fort Smith, Arkansas which was followed by calls to Jeffersonville, Indiana and Muncie, Indiana, during which time Don completed his Master’s degree.  This was followed by 16 years in the Arkansas-Louisiana Conference as the youth and education leader.  Youth ministry took Don and his family to numerous other states including Ohio, Tennessee and eventually Northern and Southern California.  During these years of ministry, the Lord gave Don and Norma a son and two daughters.  He also gave Don and Norma many long-lasting friendships that would bring them much joy over the years.

Don and Norma settled after retirement in Paradise, California, and finally in Napa, California. 

Don had a strong creative side and he had big ideas.   He dappled in painting and loved to garden.   Don loved singing, music and learning to dance.  

During the years since retirement, Don grew in his grasp of the Gospel and only increased in his amazement of the sacrifice of Christ as his savior. 

Don was proceeded in death in 2017 by his wife of 67 years, Norma Lola Winger, and his younger sister Alice Lewis in 2023.   He is survived by his son Nordon Winger (Christine); daughter Marlo Mulroney (Christopher) and daughter Lorene “Lori” Bordessa (William).; his 8 grandchildren: Chad Mulroney (Lee), Chana Tetzlaff (TJ), Cory Mulroney, Chon Winger (Jessica), Christian Winger (Sarah), Will Bordessa, Sophie Ellison (Mark) and Grace Bordessa; and 4 great grandchildren: Micah, Kimberly, Callum and one on the way. 

Our family would like to extend sincere appreciation to the staff at The Gardens at the Watermark for their compassionate care of Don during his final days.  

Family and friends are invited to a memorial service to celebrate Don’s life on Thursday, March 28, 2024, at 11:00am at the Chapel at Tulocay Funeral Home at 411 Coombsville Road, Napa, CA, 94559 followed by graveside internment and fellowship at the reception hall.































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Memorial Service
March 28, 2024

11:00 AM
Coombsville Road Napa, Tulocay Funeral Home


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