James A. Winn, age 79, of rural Bancroft, passed away of a brief illness on Wednesday evening,
December 6, 2017 at Ministry Saint Clare’s Hospital in Weston surrounded by family.
He was born September 22, 1938 in Milwaukee, the son of George and Davier (Kuentzel) Winn. He
married Donna M. Zick on December 8, 1962 in Waukesha. She preceded him in death on April 8, 2017.
Jim grew up on the family farmette where he began his love of animals and farming. Jim graduated
from Mukwonago Union High School in 1956. He attended college in Milwaukee and then graduated
from WI State College in Whitewater in 1961 with certifications in Social Studies, History and English.
After completing college, he served with the Army and continued with the Army Reserves. Jim and
Donna resided in Waukesha for a few years before moving to Shullsburg for one year. They returned to
Waukesha prior to moving to their beloved farm in Bancroft on October 31, 1965. Jim was a highly
respected social studies teacher at Tri-County High School for 34 years and enjoyed substitute teaching
for several years after retirement. A favorite pasttime of his teaching years included playing ping-pong
against students during the lunch hour.
During their nearly 55 years of marriage, Jim and Donna rarely spent time apart. They were often in the
woods or outside together tending to their apple orchards, many fruit bushes and vines, and gardening.
Jim enjoyed cultivating many interesting plants in his greenhouse. Also on the farm, the couple kept busy
with raising dairy and beef cattle and a variety of other animals, including chickens, geese, pigs, horses,
ducks, a roadrunner, and countless cats and dogs which were always treated as “part of the family”. Jim
was known to go to the Humane Society “to just look” which almost always meant he was coming home
with another pet.
Spending time with family was of utmost priority to Jim. He rarely missed a sporting event, concert,
dance recital, or other important occasion in his daughters’ or granddaughters’ lives. November was a
special time which brought together the deer hunters for card games, good laughs, great food, and a bit of
hunting. For over 20 years, Father’s Day was spent canoeing with a large family group down the Crystal
River and picnicking at Hartman’s Creek. Jim was also an avid reader and collector (hoarder) of books
which he liked to pass along and share with family as well.
He is survived by his two loving daughters, Wendy Winn (Joseph Zwaska) Wausau area and Jaimie
Winn (David Rutz) Almond, WI; his adored granddaughters, Devon Winn, Ella Winn and Audra Zwaska;
brother Kenneth (Elaine) Winn and sister Susan (Alden) Ferguson; sisters-in-law Lorna Zick and Jodi
Kasperski, brothers-in-law Eric (Gloria) Zick and Bob Nichols; and many nieces and nephews that were
like daughters and sons to him.
In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his wife’s parents, Albert and Augusta
(Nichols) Zick, step-mother-in-law Virginia (Kinney) Zick; brothers and sisters-in-law Marvin
Cunningham, Dorothy and Darv Sjoberg, Ilah and Fred Plehn, Lyle and Margie Nichols, Raymond
Nichols, Phillipa Nichols, and June Zick; and nephew Bruce Nichols.
Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, December 16, 2017 at 12:00 noon in the Stahl Funeral
Home, Plainfield. Visitation will be held from 10:00 a.m. until the time of services at the funeral home.
The Stahl Funeral Home of Plainfield is assisting the family with arrangements, www.stahlfuneralhome.com