Wilma Ann Wooten

7 August, 193311 January, 2021
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Wilma Kearns Wooten, 87, of Winston-Salem, NC, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on January 11, 2021.

Wilma is survived by her husband of 51 years, Robert Wooten; son, Bobby Lain and his wife Melinda of Indianapolis, IN; son, Robbie Wooten and his wife, Julie of High Point, NC; and daughter, Melanie Ross and her husband, Doug of High Point, NC; grandsons Tristan Lain (fianceé, Therese) and Ethan Wooten; and granddaugther, Ashton Wooten. She was preceded in death by her parents, Earl and Velon Kearns, and her brother, Earl Kearns.

Wilma was born on August 7, 1933 to Earl and Velon Kearns of High Point, North Carolina. She often said that her daddy hung the moon. She absolutely adored her brother, Earl, who would always let her tag along on his dates. She was very talented as a young girl performing as a majorette in the school marching band, as well as being a first chair violinist for the high school orchestra. Her work career included being a sales coordinator for Alderman Studios in High Point. She later went to work at Wooten Printing Co, Inc. where she sold printing to area furniture companies, photography studios and ad agencies for more than 20 years until she and her husband, Robert, sold the business in 1993.

While she never officially retired from selling printing, she spent a majority of her spare time working with her hands. She would hand crochet beautiful baby booties and blankets for newborns of friends and family, and she loved sewing pillow cases for the Ronald McDonald House in Winston-Salem with her granddaughter, Ashton.

Wilma was an incredibly giving person. As an Elvis Presley fan, she discovered a significant purpose in her life when she began supporting the Elvis Presley Memorial Trauma Center in Memphis, TN. She first decided to help by publishing an Elvis Fans Cookbook that featured recipes from fans from all over the world. The first cookbook was a tremendous success which led to the creation of three more volumes. The resulting sales allowed her to donate nearly $80,000 to the trauma center. The funds were used to buy beds and upfit rooms to better support patient needs. She would visit Memphis, TN every August for two weeks to help the Trauma Center Foundation with fundraisers. This “vacation” was the highlight of Wilma’s year. She made the trip with her daughter Melanie every year from 1978 through 2017. Her work was instrumental in getting the Trauma Center named after Elvis Presley, and to this day is the only free-standing building that bears Elvis’ name and the only healthcare institution named in his honor. Her commitment to the Trauma Center opened many doors, one of which was the honor to serve as a founding board member for the Trauma Center Foundation, a position she held for 27 years. Her many trips to Memphis not only filled her tank, they led to the creation of countless lifelong friends. Friendships she deeply cherished.

Wilma also loved serving the church she grew up in as a little girl, Wesley Memorial Methodist of High Point. For 45+ years, she led the two-year old Sunday school class where she taught her kids about Jesus and the importance of loving and following Him as their Savior. Each week she would carefully plan the lesson that included lots of fun time with crafts tied to a story in the Bible. Again, using her God-given creative skills to make learning about Christ fun for her kids.

Two words come to mind when describing Wilma. The first word is selfless. She loved her family, friends and community. She never shied away from helping and serving others before herself. The second is resilient. She endured many difficult situations with the grit of her teeth and never quit attitude that served her well, especially in the last two years. Nothing could ever slow her down. It was not uncommon for her to spend 5-6 hours each Saturday making the rounds to Costco, Walmart, Hobby Lobby and the Dollar Store with her husband Robert, while in great bodily pain to shop for holiday-themed decorations and gifts to ensure that her home was festive and the ones around her felt loved and appreciated. While perhaps simple to most, these acts brought her great joy and her indomitable spirit is part of her legacy.

But, nothing brought her more joy than her children and grandchildren. They were the loves of her life. While some would say she liked to spoil them, she would be quick to say she was just loving them. She also made it a priority to attend every sporting event and important activity to show her support. She especially loved doting on her grandchildren Tristan, Ashton and Ethan to anyone and everyone who would listen.

Wilma leaves a wonderful legacy of love, service and giving. The world is a better place because of her.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to: Regional One Health Foundation, 877 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis, TN 38103 (note on the donation - Wilma Wooten Memorial).

A lie in state visitation for Wilma will take place on Monday, January 18, 2021 from 12:00pm to 6:00pm at Sechrest-Davis Funeral Service in High Point. Due to restrictions brought on by COVID-19, a small family service will take place at Wesley Memorial UMC in High Point on Tuesday, January 19 at 2:00pm, followed by a brief graveside service at Floral Garden Memorial Park Cemetery. The funeral service will be live-streamed online for those not in attendance to view at (please copy and paste link to browser). Rev. Dr.Jeff Patterson, of Wesley Memorial UMC is officiating.


  • Earl & Velon Kearns, Parents (deceased)
  • Robert Wooten, Husband
  • Melanie Ross & husband Doug, Daughter
  • Bobby Lain & wife Melinda, Son
  • Robbie Wooten & wife Julie, Son
  • Ashton Wooten, Granddaughter
  • Tristan Lain & fiancee Therese, Grandson
  • Ethan Wooten, Grandson
  • Earl Kearns, Brother (deceased)

  • Regional One Health Foundation


  • Lie in State

    Monday, 18 January , 2021

  • Celebration of Life

    Tuesday, 19 January , 2021


Wilma Ann Wooten

have a memory or condolence to add?

Nellie Delorme

January 19, 2021

My heart is heavy for you the family of our Ms Wilma. I have so many sweet memories of our times at Elvis Presley Trauma Center. Her visits were so sweet we enjoyed many events raising money for the Trauma Center. Her love for the Trauma Center and those of us who worked there filled a spot for an often thankless job. Her love for our Lord was always known to those she was around.

Renee Leonard

January 17, 2021

Wilma was a very special woman that will be greatly missed. My condolences to the loved ones left to cherish her memories. I love you Uncle Robert.

Love always

jeanette langley

January 16, 2021

Many years ago, I taught Sunday school with Wilma. She was wonderful with those children and a pleasure to know. God bless this lovely lady.