James “Jimmy” Watson Winbourne, 79, of Wilson, entered into the kingdom eternal on Monday, April 19, 2021.
Services will be held on Saturday, April 24, 2021 at 4 PM at Wilson Memorial Service with visitation an hour before. Guests should plan to adhere to state guidelines regarding masks and social distancing policies. There will be a time of fellowship following Saturday’s services at the family’s residence in Wilson.
A lifelong servant to God’s mission, James came into the world in his home church, to James Woodrow Winbourne and Dillie Mae Winbourne in Wilson. Following his studies in Wilson and then Hampton, VA, James enlisted in the US Army in 1961. He served proudly in Vietnam from 1967-1968 and after almost 25 years of service, he retired from Fort Jackson in Columbia, SC in 1985. While still stationed in Ohio, in 1965, he married Zelma Ruth Henry Winbourne and they welcomed a daughter and son into their already large and rowdy family. An advocate for serving his community, he was involved with the Dentsville Masonic Lodge #398 for over 40 years, the Shriners of Jamil Temple, and an active member at his beloved church, Milbournie Freewill Baptist Church. James was passionate about his role as Sunday School Superintendent, Men’s League, and supporter of the Upward basketball programs.
He is survived by his wife, Zelma, of 56 years; daughter, Deborah W. Whitlow (Mark) of Columbia, SC; son, James W. Winbourne (Jennifer) of Hanover, PA; daughter-in-law, Kathy Winbourne, Ashley, OH; grandchildren, Anisa Winbourne, Emily, Elizabeth, and Eric Whitlow, James, Emmett, and Elijah Winbourne; and two great-grandsons, Kade and Kolton. He is also survived by his sisters, Doris Jean Miller of Hampton, VA and Betty Gail Baker (Cecil) of Gafton, VA; sister-in-law, Sandra Winbourne of Hampton, VA; and brother-in-law, Warren M. Henry Jr. (Karen) of Cincinnati, OH; as well as many generations of nieces, nephews, and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his son, Steven Ray Winbourne; his sister, Elizabeth Jane Page; his brothers, Billy Williams and Bobby and Willie Winbourne. Jim was a force to be reckoned with, the life of the party, and will be missed greatly by all who know him.
In lieu of flowers, please consider your memorials to Shriners Hospitals for Children, 403 E Front St., New Bern, NC 28560, or Milbournie Freewill Baptist Church, c/o Jo Ann Rollins, 5854 Countryside Rd, Wilson, NC 27896.
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