- Published: February 25, 2010
Jason Winskie, a former Yellow Springs resident, died at his home in Columbus on Feb. 13. He was 36.
Born on July 12, 1973, in San Antonio, Texas, Jason was the only child of Don Winskie and Debra (Hyson) Winskie. Jason frequently visited Yellow Springs, where he maintained the friendships he’d begun when his family moved to the area in 1985. During his middle and high school years, he established the character his family and friends knew well and loved. Jason’s humorous side, depending on his audience, ranged from the subtle to the raucous. Jason also developed an early love of music and taught himself to play guitar, bass and keyboards. This love continued throughout his life. Jason was known for his quick, beautiful smile — one that he shared freely. Jason’s gentle, compassionate side garnered him much admiration and respect. He loved taking friends’ children on walks through the parks or the area zoos. He was especially kind to his younger brother, Alex.
Jason was a gifted, yet shy musician who studied jazz at Central State in the ’90s. He was an avid student, but also enjoyed teaching music to others. Jason was also an excellent craftsman; he worked on many projects in Yellow Springs and Columbus. He loved building and repairing homes. Jason loved learning how to do something he’d never done before; over the last summer he put in floors in his mother’s home, and did the job beautifully. Over the last four years, Jason attended Columbus State. He transferred over to Ohio State University in 2008 and was pursuing a bachelors in anthropology at the time of his death. Learning was always part of Jason’s life: whether practicing guitar riffs, building a rock garden, learning Latin or new cooking techniques, Jason immersed himself in a subject and embraced knowledge.
Jason’s legendary logical dexterity landed him in heated yet friendly debates among friends and family. Jason never held a grudge; he was forgiving and loving — wise beyond his years. Jason has a large extended family, but also a vast family of friends in Yellow Springs and Columbus. During the last several years, Jason also cooked at Betty’s and O-Shaugnessy’s in Columbus. He was valued deeply and admired by his co-workers, who will sorely miss him.
Growing up, Jason spent much time at the home of John and Jean Hyson, his maternal grandparents, in Enon. Their devotion, dedication and love for him are immense. Jason spent several summers at Seneca Lake camping with his Grandpa John, who was a key male role model in his life. His Grandma Jean was his other mother; he referred to her as “Granny-Mother” as a young boy. He was their first grandchild.
Jason was preceded in death by his father, Don Winskie, and his paternal grandfather, Dean Winskie, also of Enon. Survivors in his immediate family include his mother and brother, Debra Williamson and Alex Oliver, respectively, of Yellow Springs, his maternal grandparents, John and Jean Hyson of Enon, his Aunt Paula Kosted of Eureka, Mont., his Uncle Scott Hyson of Homer, Ala., his Uncle Zach Hyson of Chico, Calif., his Uncle Stephen Hyson of Carmel, Ind. and his Uncle David Hyson of New Carlisle. He is also survived by numerous cousins and other relatives. Jason also leaves two large communities of friends in Yellow Springs and Columbus.
Condolences may be sent to Debra Williamson at 1435 Southgate Avenue, Yellow Springs, 45387. Donations will be accepted in Jason’s name to be used to fund a scholarship at Ohio State University. A memorial service celebrating Jason’s life will be held on March 14, 2–5 p.m., at the Glen Helen Building Auditorium.