Drawhorn Van Devender passed away peacefully on December 16, 2012, at Life Care Center of Banner Elk (NC), at the age of 87. Winnie was born in Port Neches, Texas, to Thomas Ellis and Edith Allen Drawhorn. She lived there until she married Fred R. Van Devender in 1944, and shared and inspired his life for 42 years. She spent most of the rest of her life caring for her beloved family, friends (new and old) and a number of small dogs. She is survived by her brother Miles Drawhorn, of California; three sons: Thomas R. Van Devender and wife, Ana Lilia Reina of Tucson, AZ; Robert Wayne Van Devender and wife, Amy S. Van Devender of Boone, NC and Michael R. Van Devender and wife April Jones of Arcata, CA; her seven grandchildren: Tim, Martha, Eve, Barnabas, Tasha, Lily, and Monica; and her seven great grandsons: Ethan, Zachary, Christopher, Bodhi, Frederick, Jeffrey and William. She was a strong, beautiful woman, full of grace. Hers was an unremarkable life led by a truly remarkable person. We cherish memories of her delight in bowling, bingo, southern food, and granbabies. She lives on in all of us. She was, and is, well-loved and will be sorely missed. A gathering of family and friends will be held on Thursday, December 27, 2012 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. when funeral services will be conducted at Melancon's Funeral Chapel with Dr. David Mahfouz officiating. Burial will follow in Oak Bluff Memorial Park in Port Neches, TX. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Medi-Home Hospice, PO Box 1357, Newland, NC 28657; to the Multiple Sclerosis Society, Central NC Chapter, 2211 West Meadowview Road, Suite 30, Greensboro, NC 27407, or to a charity of donor's choice. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com. Melancon Funeral Home of Nederland, TX and Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory of Boone, NC are serving the Van Devender family. Details and registry available at Melancons.org.
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Published in The Beaumont Enterprise on Dec. 23, 2012