Mary Elizabeth Merritt Winstead


Mary Elizabeth Merritt Winstead, 104, loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, May 7, 2022.

Due to the risks of COVID infections, there will be no services or visitations at this time; a memorial service is planned for a later date.

Mary Lib was preceded in death by her husband, Wharton Winstead, her son, Merritt Winstead, and daughter, Betsy Winstead Allen; her granddaughter, Libby Winstead; her two brothers: John H. Merritt, Jr. and William Joseph Merritt, and her two sisters, Ellen Coxe Merritt Kane and Nancy Merritt Allen.

Born in Person County, North Carolina, on Jan. 29, 1918, she was the daughter of Dr. John H. Merritt and Ellen Belle Coxe. After graduating from Flora McDonald College in Red Springs, North Carolina, she taught school in Person County. 

Following her marriage, Mary Lib devoted her life to her family, her church, Long Memorial UMC in Roxboro, and many civic activities, including service on the Board of Trustees of Person Memorial Hospital. During her very active lifetime, she was an avid gardener and frequent traveler, privileged to have traveled to fascinating and exotic lands around the world. In her younger years, she was a licensed and accomplished airplane pilot.

Mary Lib is survived by two of her children, daughter, Jo Catharine Winstead, and son, Wharton Winstead, Jr. and wife, Kathryn; three grandchildren: Beth, Sim, and John, and five great-grandchildren: Cameron, Nicholas, Emma, Siena, and Charley.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Long Memorial UMC, PO Box 310, Roxboro, NC 27573.

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