Emma Theresa Housner, called Winky because of her maiden name, Winklbauer, passed away at Windy Hill in Kingwood, WV. Winky was 94 and passed away on June 30, 2020, from natural causes. Winky was born on May 29, 1926 in Altoona, PA. She had three brothers, Bun, Shorty, and Tubby and a number of nieces, nephews, and cousins. She grew up in Sinking Valley and had an idyllic life living in the beautiful mountains near Altoona. She was a tomboy and loved riding bikes, climbing trees, going on hikes, and playing football with the Sinkin’ Valley Bonecrushers.
Winky met lieutenant Dale Housner when he was on leave during WW II and soon after they eloped. Together they had two sons, Lynn and Alan. Winky and Dale moved to Pittsburgh and they worked in a variety of jobs. A highlight was the purchase of a convenience store in Harrison City. They had this store well before 7/11 or Sheetz became popular. After they sold the store, they moved to Mt. Lebanon in the south hills of Pittsburgh.
Winky was a strong advocate of her sons’ interests. For instance, Alan and Lynn were involved in wrestling, baseball, and football. Winky would attend many of their games and matches. However, she was so nervous that, more often than not, she would hide her eyes from viewing the event. Athletic practices caused Lynn and Al to come home at different times. Alan got home at 5:30 and I got home at 6:30 and Dad got home at 4:30 and he liked to eat dinner right away. So, Winky would routinely and cheerfully prepare three dinners every night.
After Lynn and Alan left home, Dale took a job with Dupont which required travel to Japan. This was another highlight of their lives together. They traveled throughout Japan on motorbikes. They also took side trips to South Korea, Hong Kong, and other locations in Asia. After finishing his work in Japan, Dale and Winky returned to the US and lived in West Chicago, Il. Tragically, Winky lost Dale to pancreatic cancer at 69. She was heartbroken and she would often say, “I’m mad at your dad for leaving so soon”.
Winky and Dale were planning a trip to Europe with Lynn and his wife Katrina. When Dale passed away, instead of cancelling the trip the three of them went ahead and spent over a month exploring Europe. This was Winky’s first trip to Europe. A highlight of the trip was finding relatives in Germany. The Winklbauers visited us in West Virginia. We had a reunion in Altoona and American Winklbauers came to the Bavarian Club. I danced with my mother and Winky said, “This has been so wonderful, I’ll never forget any of this. I only wish your dad had been here to see this, I’m still mad at him.” I replied, “Me too, mom. Me too”.
Winky lived alone for a while until she ultimately moved to Kingwood, WV to live with her son Lynn and his wife, Katrina. She loved living on a 40-acre farm. We would work on the farm together every weekend and often during weekday evenings. Ultimately, Winky went into Windy Hill Assisted Living where she passed away.
Winky was active in church in West Chicago and Kingwood. She was an avid member of bible study groups and was involved in a number of services to the poor and needy. Food drives, visiting shut-ins and singing in the choir were some of the many activities in which she was involved. Winky was a devout Christian and attended the Wesley United Methodist Church in Kingwood. She knew she would meet Dale and Jesus in heaven.
Winky was the kindest and most generous person I have ever known. She always thought of others first. Always. Winky will be missed, but we take solace that Winky will now be with Dale after being apart for so long. Winky is survived by her sons Alan and Lynn and their spouses Kathy and Katrina and her grandchildren, Joshua, Jessica, and Jamie. She was predeceased by Dale Housner, the love of her life.
Cremation services were under the direction of Rotruck-Lobb Funeral Home and Crematory in Kingwood. Winky’s interment will be in Logan Valley Cemetery in Bellwood, PA.
Personal condolences may be offered to the family at www.rotruck-lobb.com.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Emma Theresa Housner, please visit our floral store.