Martha Noel Winkeler

November 22, 1944 - November 27, 2019
Martha Noel Winkeler

Martha Noel Phipps Winkeler died at home November 27, 2019 surrounded by her loving husband, daughter and her sweet dogs.

Martha was born November 22, 1944 in Lynchburg VA to Paul and Claire Phipps of Beckley WV, who preceded her in death.

She is survived by her husband of 7 years, Arthur; her children, Hank Hickman, Claire Clemmons, (Paul) and Russ Hickman, (Brian), and her step-children Cheri McGrath, (Johnny), Laura Crowder, (David), Jon Connette, (Tracy), Daryl Connette, (Evelyn) and Mark Connette, (Susan). As well as her brother Robert Phipps, (Florence) of Florence, SC and loads of grandchildren including Joseph and Alison Hickman and Caroline and Andrew Clemmons, to whom she was Nana.

Martha had an ideallic childhood in Beckley, where she walked to school, uphill both ways, (even when the hairs froze in her nose from the cold). She was a talented artist, winning many awards and captain of the Woodrow Wilson High School Cheerleaders. Upon graduation she attended Lynchburg College, in Lynchburg VA where she earned a degree in Biology. Martha taught High School biology in Georgia and Florida before settling in Brunswick county to raise her family.

As a mother and homemaker she was able to take on many, many hobbies, including painting, drawing, basket-weaving, playing cards, stained glass, sewing, knitting, baking, embroidery, gardening, reading, and Bible study.  Martha owned and operated an upholstery shop out of her home for over 20 years. She was a true perfectionist, and used that attribute to match plaids across many sofas, and bring furniture abandoned back to life. Martha was a great mom, who had her patience tested many, many times by her children.

Martha was an active member of Myrtle Grove Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, NC. She had a passionate desire to share the good news of Christ with everyone she knew. She served on the church’s evangelism team for many years. She never missed an opportunity to remind of the Lord’s eminent return.

In 2001 she took on a new challenge, a new business and a new partner, her daughter Claire. Together they owned and operated The Quarter Stitch, a boutique knit shop, in Wilmington, NC for 17 years. Martha loved being surrounded by the colors, textures and most of all the community of knitters who became family in that shop. She loved helping customers, laughing with friends and casting on new projects with abandon.

In 2012 she married the love of her life Arthur. Martha and Arthur enjoyed traveling, cooking, fishing, home projects and walking their beloved dogs, Ginger and Daisy.

She will be remembered for her kindness, numerous talents and infectious laugh by all that knew her.

A  Memorial Service will be held at the Wilmington Funeral Chapel on Tuesday December 3, 2019 at 11:00 am, with time to visit the family beginning at 10am.

The family request in lieu of flowers memorial gifts be made to Lower Cape Fear Hospice.

Share memories and condolences with the family by clicking on the “Condolence” tab below.

Wilmington Funeral & Cremation  – Wilmington Chapel – 1535 41st Street Wilmington, NC 28403  910-791-9099.


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  • November 28, 2019
    Betsy pickard and randy says:
    I have never known anyone who was as talented as martha in so many endeavors: upholstry, knitting, cooking, seamstress, decorating and most of all a loving daughter, mother and grandmother. Though I did not have the pleasure of knowing her husband, I do know she was a wife to be proud to have in his life. I so regret having lost contact over the years with my amazing friend and I want Hank, Claire and Russell to know they are in my thoughts and prayers. May God bless you and you dear mother.

  • November 28, 2019
    Rita Winkeler says:
    We did not get to see Martha very often, but we fell in love with her the first time we met, and so enjoyed visiting her when she came to Bartelso. She was so kind, thoughtful, gentle and a real lady. She was so talented, and loved sharing that talent. We were blessed to know her, even if only for a little while. Hugs and prayers to Art and her family.

  • November 29, 2019
    Crystal Baker lit a candle:
    Lit since November 29, 2019 at 11:22:28 PM

  • November 29, 2019
    Wanza and Bruce Wiley says:
    Claire, Bruce and I send our condolences and wish you and your loved ones warmth, love, and healing.

  • December 01, 2019
    Ashleigh (Dalrymple) Brothers says:
    Hank, Claire, Russell and family, I knew Martha/your mom -- when we were all growing up together -- as one of the nicest moms of all my friends. She always had a smile, a great laugh, or a kind word when I was at your house. Such a sweet lady! I'm grateful to have known her. You're all in my thoughts. Big virtual hugs, friends. <3