A Memorial Service will be held Saturday, July 21, at 10 a.m. at Peace United Church of Christ, 402 8th Avenue South, St. Cloud. Refreshments will be served following the service. Flowers will be accepted at the Church beginning at 9 a.m. Her burial will be at 10 a.m. Monday, July 23 at the Minnesota Veterans Cemetery near Camp Ripley with full military honors.
Winnie was born in Paynesville and graduated as Salutatorian at Eden Valley High School. In November 1944, she enlisted in the Army Air Corps as a WAC, Women Army Corps. Her basic training for administration was in Des Moines, Iowa with her primary duty station at Gowen Field, Boise, Idaho, taking care of records for bomb training and celestial navigation officers. She was transferred to Fort Lewis, Wash., and was discharged as a Sergeant in December 1945 from Camp Beale, Calif. She earned the American Area Ribbon and World War II Victory Ribbon. She married Robert D. Galbraith, May 15, 1946. They moved from Pierz to Little Falls after he retired as principal at Harding Elementary School. Winnie was employed by the University of Minnesota as a nutrition educator. Winnie was a member of First United Church of Little Falls, where she taught Sunday school, and American Legion Post #46, where she served as chaplain. She was involved in the Brainerd-Little Falls Men’s Barbershop group, Toastmistresses, and Red Hat Society. After moving to St. Cloud, she became a member of Peace United Church of Christ and was active in Women in the Military – CMU, where she served as vice president, chaplain and communication chair. Winnie was in attendance at the memorial dedication of Women in the Military Service of America (WIMSA) in Washington, D.C. in October 1997, when 1,700 women overflowed the building at Andrews AFB. Winnie was an active member of the American Legion Silver Star Post #428, Waite Park and was an original passenger on the Honor Flight to the WWII Memorial in Washington, DC. She was always willing to relate her military experiences to organizations and students.
Winnie is survived by her daughter Wendy Dahl (Reynold) of Whitinsville, Mass.,; son John (Marti) Galbraith of Sartell; grandchildren Justin, Mark (Elisabeth), Eric and Corah Dahl and Rob, Chris and Katie Galbraith; sister Joan Powell of Arlington, Texas; and brother, John Abitz of Roanoke, Texas. She was preceded in death by parents William and Martha Abitz, husband Robert, and brothers Winton, Lowell, and Gerald Abitz.
The family would like to thank the St. Cloud VA Hospice Center nurses and staff for their excellent care and compassion during Winnie’s stay there. Winnie’s “love of life” was for her family, church, friends and her country. She will be greatly missed.