Terry Howie
Terry Howie
WINONA LAKE – Former Winona Lake Town Marshal, firefighter and Councilman Terry Alan Howie died unexpectedly at 5:45 p.m. Monday. He was 73. Howie was a resident of Winona Lake since 1964 and earned his bachelor’s degree and completed the three-year seminary graduate program at Grace College. Howie was a volunteer firefighter at Winona Lake Fire Department, and according to his obituary, donated materials and labor for the construction of the fire department’s building. Howie began as a part-time officer for WLPD in 1982, became full-time in 1984 and served as town marshal from 1990-1995, retiring from the force in 2006. Winona Lake Town Manager Craig Allebach fondly remembered Howie and working with him during Howie’s time as town marshal and Allebach’s time as Warsaw police chief. “He was the one in 1999 that came to me and said they’re thinking about making a town manager, so he’s really how I found out about this job,” Allebach said. Howie also served on the Winona Lake Town Council and as president of the council at one time, Winona Lake Clerk-Treasurer Kent Adams said. “He was very community-minded and family oriented and always helping people,” Adams said. Others may know Howie from his business, Howie Heating and Cooling, that he’s owned and operated since 1972. “He ran a very successful business and he provided service to our house along with many others, and if you asked him to do something you knew it was done right without having to check,” longtime friend John Elliott said. “And most importantly, he loved his kids and (his wife) Lynn, and he loved getting them their Model-A’s, and I’d get my Mustang out and we’d go spinning around town.” Elliott said Howie also had a love for Winona Lake. “He brought some great ideas to the town council and helped move Winona forward as the great town that it is. It’s just such a tragic ending. He and Dave Wolkins and I were really three very close friends, and we shared a lot together, and I know Dave and I will both, along with Lynn, miss him tremendously. He was a hardworking, Christian man,” Elliott said. Howie reportedly fell out of a tree in his yard while trimming a branch, Wolkins said. “It was a total shock when I went down there,” Wolkins said. “He was still there, Lynn was in the house calling the family and pretty broken up, and a lot of his friends were there. He was surrounded by a lot of friends because Terry had a lot of friends in this community.” Kosciusko County Coroner Tony Ciriello pronounced Howie dead at the scene and said further autopsy results won’t be available until possibly Thursday. “I think he probably was dead before he hit the ground, because knowing Terry, he was a very safe individual and the ladder was still up. The ladder was solid as could be, and it looked like he was probably trying to climb down, and Terry’s smart enough, he would have broken the fall with his hand, but apparently he fell straight down and hit his face on the ground. I think it probably was a heart attack,” Wolkins said. “He had cancer, he fought through that. He had heart problems, he fought through that,” Wolkins said. “He was an amazing individual. He was so energetic, worked so hard, and he would help anybody at anytime. We went to a lot of auctions. He liked antique cars, I like antique cars. He was just a really neat, neat individual.” Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Chris Francis recalls working with Howie’s son Jeff at the sheriff’s department. Francis said when he started road duty as a young man, Howie gave him tips and insight into the job. According to Howie’s obituary, one of Howie’s greatest honors was seeing his son become a KCSO deputy and being able to serve alongside him in local law enforcement. Along with Lynn, his wife of 22 years, Howie leaves behind a daughter and his son. Visitation is scheduled for 1 to 6 p.m. Sunday at Redpath-Fruth Funeral Home, Warsaw, with a funeral service at 10 a.m. Monday.