Mary Gwendlyn "Gwen" Wynkoop

1931 - 2018

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Gwen Wynkoop, of Palm Beach, FL, and Findlay, Ohio, passed away peacefully on Thursday, December 20, in her home in Palm Beach, following several months of varied health struggles. Known for her irresistibly endearing smile and the loving warmth with which she interacted with everyone, she leaves behind countless friends, family members, fellow singers, neighbors, coworkers, and an array of others whose lives she brightened immeasurably during the course of her life. She was preceded in death by her husband, Raymond Clarence Wynkoop, by her sister Shirley Gainsley, her brother William M. Holloway, and her brother Kent Holloway. Born Mary Gwendlyn Holloway to William C. Holloway, Jr., and Dorothy McFall Holloway on June 6, 1931, in Galatea, Ohio, Gwen attended elementary school in Akron and North Baltimore, Ohio. She and her older sister Shirley shared a love of music, and they frequently performed together in church and school during their childhood, even when family circumstances caused them to live apart temporarily. In high school, Gwen worked as a clerk and office worker at Uhlmann’s department store after school and during the summers. After graduating from North Baltimore High School in 1949, she worked for a year and a half at Bartlett Insurance Company, doing office work. During the summer of 1950, she met Raymond Clarence Wynkoop (b. 1929), of Van Buren, OH, and they were married at the St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in North Baltimore on October 29, 1950, after a short courtship. They lived in North Baltimore until Ray was drafted by the Army in January 1951. While he was stationed at Ft. Knox, Kentucky, working in the Army post office, Gwen lived with her grandfather, William C. Holloway, Sr., in nearby Battletown, Kentucky. Six months later, they moved to Indiana when Ray was transferred to Ft. Benjamin Harrison, Indiana. Son Rodney Alan Wynkoop (b. 1951) and daughter Debra Ann (“Anni”) Wynkoop (Colette)(b. 1952) were born while Ray was serving in the Army, and son Randall Lee Wynkoop (b. 1954) was born in Findlay, Ohio, while Ray and Gwen were living on a farm in Arcadia, Ohio, owned by his parents (Clarence Leroy Wynkoop and Pearl Barfell Wynkoop). They moved to Findlay in December 1955, where Ray worked for the Ohio Oil Company (later renamed Marathon Oil Co.) and Gwen undertook the multiple responsibilities of running the Wynkoop household. They joined First Lutheran Church in Findlay, where Gwen sang in the choir for decades. She began teaching piano lessons in 1957 and quickly became a beloved piano teacher who eventually taught hundreds of piano students and some organ students during her almost 30 years of teaching, all the while balancing this with the many obligations of managing household and family affairs. She was active in two charitable organizations dedicated to children’s health: TWIG (Terrific Women in Giving) and CCL (Child Conservation League), and she remained close friends with some of the other members throughout her life. In 1965, Ray and Gwen’s fourth child, Dale L Wynkoop, was born. The family started playing tennis in the late 1960s, and this quickly became a passion that continued throughout Gwen’s life. She took a job at the Hancock County Mental Health Board in 1984, working there until she retired in 1992 when Ray also retired from Marathon. They began to do more traveling, and the following winter they bought a condo in Palm Beach, Florida. From that time on, they split their time each year between Ohio and Florida. After moving to Florida, Ray and Gwen spent much time playing tennis and traveling extensively, frequently going to see their children’s and grandchildren’s performances, sporting events, weddings, birthdays, and graduations. She began singing in the Masterworks Chorus of The Palm Beaches and later in The Robert Sharon Chorale, and she and Ray toured Europe several times with these choirs. They joined the Royal Poinciana Chapel and a small movie group, and they found many friends there as well as in the choirs. She tended faithfully to Ray for many years subsequent to his cancer diagnosis, until his passing in 2008. In the years since then, she continued to enjoy many of the same activities, while also becoming an avid golfer and traveling even more frequently to family events. Gwen is survived by her sister Valerie McGuire (EJ Jones), son Rodney Wynkoop, daughter Anni Wynkoop Collette (Daniel McKay “KC” Collette), son Randy Wynkoop (Patti Myers Wynkoop), and son Dale Wynkoop (Sandy Keber Wynkoop), as well as 12 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at First Lutheran Church, Findlay, at 11 am on Saturday, December 29. The family will receive friends at COLDREN-CRATES FUNERAL HOME on Friday, December 28, from 2-4 pm and 6-8 pm. Memorial contributions may be made to the First Lutheran Church in Findlay or to the student scholarship fund of The Robert Sharon Chorale in Palm Beach.

Service Information
  • Visitation Details:

    205 West Sandusky Street
    Findlay, Ohio 45840
    Friday, December 28th 2018 2:00 - 4:00 PM and 6:00 - 8:00 PM

  • Funeral Service:

    Saturday, December 29th 2018 - 11:00 AM

  • Service Location:

    First Lutheran Church [Map]
    109 E. Lincoln St
    Findlay, Ohio 45840

  • Final Resting Place:

    Maple Grove Cemetery [Map]
    1120 W Main Cross St
    Findlay, Ohio 45840

  • Contributions:

  • Instructions:

Condolences For Mary Gwendlyn "Gwen" Wynkoop

Click here to send a condolence

To : Anti and family
Date :Wednesday, December 26th 2018
From : David Leman
What a lady! I am so sorry for your loss. She was such a pleasant person and truly a joy to work for! I’m grateful for the opportunity to get to know her! Unfortunately, I can’t be there in person to pay my respects. May God bless all of you with His peace and comfort! Blessings from Above!

To : Rodney Annie Randy and Dale
Date :Friday, December 28th 2018
From : Becky Meadors
HI Rodney, Annie, Randy and Dale, So sorry to hear about your mother's passing. Our prayers and thoughts are with you during this time. Maybe there are tennis courts in heaven! I have lots of good memories of your parents.
Unfortunately, we will not be able to attend neither the viewing or funeral. Our oldest daughter, Rachel, lives inTallahassee FL and we are there with her during holidays.
Becky (Cramer) Meadors

To : Rodney Anni Randy and Dale
Date :Friday, December 28th 2018
From : John Cramer
Karen and I send you our condolences upon the passing of your mother and we pray that God will strengthen you in your time of loss. Your Mom and Dad were two of the most impressive people I have known. Their kindness and generosity were so impressive and inspiring!

To : Anni Collette
Date :Friday, December 28th 2018
From : Greg Meyers
Anni, My sincere condolences to you and your family. Your Mom was such a great lady. I was fortunate to get to know her while she worked at the Mental Heath Board and would see her from time to time on her walks up and down South Main.

My thoughts and prayers are with you. Greg Meyers

To : Wynkoop Family
Date :Friday, December 28th 2018
From : Kathleen Bradley
Dear Rod, Anni, and Randy and your Aunt Valerie- You have all my sympathy on the death of your mother and sister. I am sorry I cannot be at her funeral. I will be thinking of you and you are in my heart. I am sure you will miss her so much. May your memories of your lovely mother and sister comfort you.

To : Wynkoop Family
Date :Friday, December 28th 2018
From : Kathleen Bradley
Dear Dale- I did not mean to leave you out. You have my sympathies on the death of your lovely mother. And so do all the grandchildren. Thinking of you all.

To : Wynkoop Family
Date :Saturday, December 29th 2018
From : Lisa Adler Brinkmann
My sympathies for the loss of your dear Mother. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.

To : Val Randy Rodney Ann and Dale
Date :Saturday, December 29th 2018
From : Bill Mie Holloway
We are deeply sorry to learn of your loss. Aunt Gwen always shared a hug and warm heart to us like she did for so many others. She’s been of pillar of the Holloway and Wynkoop families, having endured so many passing before her, yet always giving us confidence that there’s a higher level plan ahead. We all can marvel at her accomplishments and the foundations that she’s instilled in all of us trying to fill her shoes. She’s not gone, but continues within all of us, and for that we’re blessed.

Thank-you so much for sharing such a wonderful, wonderful lady.

To : The Wynkoop Family
Date :Wednesday, February 6th 2019
From : Lorraine Rendleman Richard Kalb
Please accept the condolences of total strangers to you. We met Gwen on our daily walks along South Ocean Blvd in Palm Beach, and were always on the lookout for her lively step, floppy hat and warm smile. Over the course of two winters, we chatted numerous times while we took brief rests on a shared bench with a lovely view of the intracoastal. We learned tidbits about her pride in hitting 10,000 steps each day, her pleasure in travel and her dedication to the arts, especially music. We were both tickled to discover family connections through Duke choral groups. Gwen was such a lovely woman, and we will surely miss her sunny warmth and friendly ways.