WINONA LAKE — Longtime Winona Lake civic leader, Terry Howie, passed away Monday evening, Dec. 2.
Howie died following an accident at his home. He was 73.
Howie was born in Johnstown, Pa. He moved to Winona Lake in 1964 to began his studies at Grace College & Seminary and never left.
He graduated in 1968 with a bachelor’s of Arts in Biblical Studies.
Howie was the owner of Howie Heating and Cooling and remained active in several roles over the years at Grace College.
Howie served on the Winona Lake police force for 24 years and served as Town Marshal from 1990 to 1995. He acted as Building Commissioner for Winona Lake until 2006.
He also served on Winona Lake Town Council as the District 2 representative from Jan. 2007 to Dec. 2011. In that time, he was council president for two years and vice president for two years.
He leaves behind his wife, Lynn, two grown children and five grandchildren.
Winona Lake Town Manager Craig Allebach acknowledged Howie’s contributions to Winona Lake over the years. He recalled that Howie was instrumental in helping him get his current position as town manager after he retired as Warsaw Police Chief.
Howie had a hand in the town’s pursuit of grant opportunities and other innovative projects over the years, including the establishment of take-home cars for Winona Lake Police, according to Allebach.
“He was a great resource and helped us to the point where we are at now,” Allebach said.
Friends and colleagues were quick to admit Howie wasn’t the most popular town council member at times. Winona Lake resident Terry White said Howie “asked a lot of questions and was very cautious with spending the town’s money.”
State Rep. Dave Wolkins, a longtime friend of Howie’s, agreed, saying some people were displeased because Howie didn’t go along with everything that was proposed.
Wolkins said he and Howie shared a common interest in antique cars. When Wolkins and his wife moved to Warsaw a few years ago, the Howies bought their home in Winona Lake.
Wolkins headed over to Howie’s residence after the accident Monday night.
“He was a pillar in the community,” Wolkins said Tuesday. “I’m going to miss him – such a sudden thing.”
While Howie’s involvement in town government had slowed in recent years, Wolkins said Howie and his wife remained active in local Republican Party politics.
Redpath-Fruth Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. You can find his obituary here.
Dan Spalding contributed to this report.