School 19

Carolyn (Wombacher) Chelf

February 24, 1941 ~ May 4, 2022 (age 81)



Carolyn Rose Chelf, 81, passed away peacefully following a long battle with cancer. She was a caring and devoted wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and a friend to all. She had the bluest eyes, the biggest smile, and the most contagious laugh that no one will ever forget.

Carolyn was born February 24th 1941 in rural Iowa City, Iowa. She was the daughter of Genevieve and Ernie Wombacher, the middle sister in a family of seven children. Carolyn graduated from City High School in Iowa City, Iowa in 1959 and then married Kenneth W. Chelf on July 29th, 1961. Together they raised five children, Chris, Dan, Phil, Jeff, and Kelly. The family went on active duty with the 82nd Airborne Division at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina in 1970. Carolyn was a true military wife and insured the homes in varied locations over the next 23 years were happy, loving homes. Once all of the children were in school, Carolyn became a teacher’s assistant at Ponderosa Elementary School in Fayetteville, NC, continuing to nurture many other children for the next seventeen years. As well as raising her own children and teaching, Carolyn was a very active member of the church – teaching Sunday school and acting as a Eucharistic minister. Carolyn was a Cub Scout pack leader, an athletic team mother, Booster club officer, and a member of the PTA over the years. Carolyn retired after 17 years in the Cumberland County School System.

Carolyn loved family get togethers, especially the annual Wombacher family golf tournament and the Chelf family Christmas Celebration. There was never a stranger when Carolyn was involved. It was always “the more the merrier”. Carolyn loved to cook and was known for her toffee and other Christmas candies that were given as Christmas presents. She pickled cucumbers into dill pickles that were loved by all. Her favorite cooking was family celebrations where most everyone pitched in together to make delicious meals.

Carolyn loved to play euchre, bridge, and any game the children wanted to play. She played to win no matter how old the opponent. Carolyn enjoyed playing golf with Ken and her family. She was a Black and Gold Hawkeye fan. She was noted as a table dancer having danced on tables at her children’s weddings, dancing and singing to sweet Caroline whether at a wedding or tailgate party.

A Funeral Service will be held on Wednesday, May 11, 2022 at 11:00 AM at St. Patrick Catholic Church. The family will receive friends at Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 from 6-8:00 pm and at the church from 10-11:00 AM on Wednesday. A private committal will take place at Sandhills State Veterans Cemetery at Ft. Bragg on Friday, May 13, 2022 at 10:00 AM.

Carolyn is survived by her husband of 61 years, Kenneth Chelf, daughter Chris and husband Mark (Jessie and Jake), daughter-in-law Jan Chelf (Danielle, Megan – husband Burke, and Kaitlyn), son Phil and wife Laura-Beth (Andy and Zach), son Jeff (Khristian, Carter, Addie, Tanika), and daughter Kelly and husband Tobey (Oliver and Stella).Carolyn is preceded in death by son Danny and her parents.

Online condolences may be made to

Arrangements by Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home, 545 Ramsey St. Fayetteville, NC 28301.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Carolyn (Wombacher) Chelf, please visit our floral store.


May 10, 2022

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home
545 Ramsey St.
Fayetteville, NC 28301

Funeral Mass
May 11, 2022

11:00 AM
St. Patrick Catholic Church
2844 Village Dr.
Fayetteville, NC 28304

Private Committal

Sandhills State Veterans Cemetery
8220 Bragg Blvd
Fort Bragg, NC 28310

© 2022 Jernigan-Warren Funeral Home. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility