Carl Fidler

Carl was born in Cornelius, N.C., and was the youngest of six children born to William Caldwell Fidler and Margaret Goodrum Fidler.

After completing high school in his hometown, he enrolled in Appalachian State Teachers College where he played basketball and completed his masters degree in Education. While attending ASTC, his education was interrupted in January of 1943 when he enlisted in the Army during WWII and served as a medic in the European theater for 1 year, 2 months and 12 days. When he completed his Army duties in November of 1945, he resumed his education and met his future wife, Marbeth Louise Winkler, a native of Boone. Marbeth and Carl were wed on December 20th, 1947.

After completing his studies, Carl became a principal at Cove Creek Elementary School followed by the same role at Cove Creek High School where he also coached basketball. He participated in community activities such as being a Boy Scout leader and volunteering for various positions in the church. When the high schools were consolidated in Watauga County in 1965, Carl became assistant principal of Watauga High School.

During his summer recesses in the late 50’s and early 60’s, Carl took a role as business manager for the outdoor drama Horn in the West and in the early 1960’s. He and Marbeth made a choice to build the Plaza Motel on Blowing Rock Road, which was run by the family until the 1980’s. After he retired from the education profession, Carl and Marbeth continued to be active in the Boone business community and active in positions with Boone United Methodist Church.

Carl decided to get involved in elected office and became a Watauga County commissioner for twelve years, where he was very involved in initiatives to support the county education system as well as support the development of a public transportation system known today as AppalCart.

Carl was a dedicated family man and cherished being surrounded by students and faculty in the Watauga County schools, enjoying an almost daily occurrence of former students from three different generations thanking him for having positive influences on their lives. He was fond of telling stories about his years in World War II and in his later years, became more comfortable in revealing more detailed stories about the impacts of the war. He loved living in the mountains of NC, fond enough of his backyard that he loved describing specific stories about each and every tree.

Carl is survived by his wife Marbeth and their four children, Donald Carl Fidler of Morgantown, WV; John Perry Fidler (and fiancée Denise Jarvis) of Boone, NC; Mark Winkler Fidler (and wife Ruby) of Granite Bay, CA; and Margaret Elizabeth Smith of Matthews, NC. He is also survived by six grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

A note from the family: We have been blessed to have so many loving and caring people who enhanced the quality of life for our father and continue to do the same for our mother. We would like to thank the staff at Deerfield Ridge and their Executive Director Amanda Berry, Kim Constans and Dr. Tom Tighe from Caldwell Hospice, Pastor Jeff McClain and Senior Pastor Lory Beth Huffman of Boone United Methodist Church, Lance Perry and Taz Kim from the VFW, Melissa Snyder and family, and the very special caregivers that have shown so much love during a variety of circumstances. We would also like to thank the community of friends for their help, assistance and prayers over the past few years. Finally a big thank you to Austin Barnes for their flexibility and help to coordinate and provide the final services. We feel the help and support we have received from all has and continues to be a gift from God.

A Celebration of Life, led by Pastor Jeff McClain will be held at the Boone United Methodist Church on Saturday November 16th, 2019 at 2 pm.

Online condolences may be shared with the Fidler family at

Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Fidler family.

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