Ethel Winters, 94, passed away peacefully in her Hiawassee home with her beloved
dachshunds, family and friends present on June 24, 2023. She was born on November 3, 1928
to Edith and Herman Held in Grand Rapids, MI. She spent her late youth and married life in
northern Palm Beach County, FL, where she was deeply involved in Girl Scouting as a troop
leader and adult primitive camping and canoeing instructor. In the mid-1970s, Ethel and her
husband, Eddie, built a lakeside cabin in Hiawassee.
After Eddie’s unexpected death in 1977, Ethel dove into the antiques business, first owning
Green House on the Hill in Hiawassee and ending her 40+ year career as co-owner of the
Hiawassee Antique Mall. As an antique dealer, she was a founding member of the Lake
Chatuge Rotary Club, dedicating significant time and treasure to Rotary initiatives. She worked
on lake clean-ups, student scholarship programs, event organizing, building tower gardens to
feed the needy and more.
Ethel was an avid traveler with a wide range of interests - from canoeing and primitive camping
in the Everglades, Minnesota, and along the Mississippi River to cruising throughout the
Caribbean and along the Rhine River where she loved to pull out the sequined dresses and
dance the night away.
Ethel was dedicated to and loved her Hiawassee community. In addition to her Rotary work,
she made regular donations for student scholarships to Young Harris College and Towns
County High School, volunteered at the Humane Society’s Hiawassee Thrift Store, and served
on the Mountain Regional Library Board of Directors.
Ethel led a spirited life, enriched by her friends and neighbors who provided a loving and
supportive environment, especially in her later years. Her family and friends, Regency
SouthernCare Hospice and ComfortKeepers did everything possible to see that Ethel was able
to remain in her home on Lake Chatuge, with her dogs, until the very end… for that, we are all
Ethel was preceded in death by her dear husband, Eddie. She is survived by daughters Sharon
Winters and Kelly Heath, sons-in-law Kendall Reid and Samuel Heath, her dogs Shari and
Lauri, and granddogs Maury and Bridget.
In lieu of flowers, Ethel requested that donations be made to the Lake Chatuge Rotary Club for
student scholarships (P.O. Box 454, Hiawassee) and to the Humane Society’s Mountain Shelter
(129 Bowling Gap Circle, Blairsville). A Celebration of Life for friends and family will be hosted
by her daughters in late July.
Celebration of Life: Friday, July 28, 2023 from 2:00-4:00pm at the Towns County Library.