Edith Rose Cunningham, 92, of Oakdale died peacefully on Sunday, Aug. 30 surrounded by her family.
She was born in Butler, PA on April 17, 1917, the oldest child of John Chesterfield and Cora Ellen Kifer.
She moved west in 1940 with her new husband, Charles Cunningham, who worked at the Hanford Nuclear Facility during World War II. After the war, they moved first to Oakland, then to Oakdale with the intent of buying a farm. Instead, they bought Collins Grocery Store, which then became Cunningham’s Grocery and also started a new construction business, Chas. I. Cunningham Construction Company.
After her husband’s death in 1977, she continued to work in the family business with her son, Jim. She retired in 1982. The family business continues to operate, now under the name of Cunningham and Sons, Inc.
Mrs. Cunningham enjoyed traveling and playing with her many grandkids. She was a member of the Sierra Foothills Community Church and a lifetime member of the Escallonia Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star.
She is survived by her children, Jim (Sandra) Cunningham of Oakdale, Donna (Kerry Wilson) Cunningham of Newcastle, Maxine (Richard) Jewell of Oakdale, and Florina (Gerald) Taylor of Florence, CO; sister, Lois Aharrah of Pennsylvania; brother, Kenneth Kifer of Massachusetts; 13 grandchildren; 27 great-grandchildren; and two great-great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by two brothers, Raymond Kifer and Bud Kifer, in addition to her husband.
A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5 at Sierra Foothills Community Church, Oakdale with a reception to follow. Private interment to be at Oaklawn Memorial Park at a later date.
Remembrances may be made to Community Hospice, 4368 Spyres Way, Modesto, CA 95356.
Oakdale-Riverbank Memorial Chapels in charge of arrangements.
The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader
Sept. 2, 2009