September 18, 2014

City News Service 


Mary Louise Winston said she will get some much needed rest now that she has handed over Winston Mortuary, a community staple in the Watts neighborhood since 1974, to Pastor and Mrs. Shane Scott. The occasion was marked by a two hour ceremony followed by a luncheon on Sunday September 13 at the facility located on Vermont Avenue, just a few blocks from 95th Street. By 3:30 p.m. the chapel at Winston was packed with well wishers, who all remembered how Winston and her late husband James W. Winston touched their lives in some way.


“I’m excited,” said Pastor Scott’s wife Alison of the transition.


“I’m excited about helping families and about keeping the House of Winston’s good name and reputation.”


Winston said she is excited because she really sees the business as being successful for the Scotts, who serve as her pastor and first wife at Macedonia Baptist Church, also in Watts.


“I know that they will be good for the business,” Winston said.


“In the short time that I’ve known them, [I’ve gotten to know] that they are caring, loving people  and I just love them. I’ve known them for a long time and they are a part of my family.”


Winston said when the Scotts expressed interest in purchasing the mortuary, she wondered if they were fully aware of what they would be taking on. The funeral business is not easy, she said. It’s work.


“This has been my life,” Winston said. “My husband and I were dedicated to this business.”


It showed. Throughout Sunday’s reception community members, employees and colleagues continued to approach the neighborhood matriarch, praising and thanking her for all that she’s done in the Watts community. They also offered their support, beseeching her to call on them for whatever she may need in the future.


“Mrs. Winston is a well kept woman,” Pastor Scott explained. “She lived comfortably. But if the truth be told, she’s given away so much more than she’s kept.”


Allison said she hopes to emulate Winston’s synergistic sense of altruism and business acumen.


“It is a lot of work but it’s also rewarding,” she said.


“At the end of the day, when you have serviced a family and the family goes away happy… although they are grieving, they go away happy, it makes all the hard work easier.”


House of Winston has served everyone from celebrity families to families who had no means to pay for services.


“Families are the most important thing,” Winston said.


“We’re here to serve families…”

Category: Community