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Vera Lucerne (Parker) Cunningham


1913 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Vera Lucerne (Parker) Cunningham Obituary
Vera Cunningham, 102 of Otis was called home on October 14, 2015.  Vera Lucerne (Parker) Cunningham was born August 16, 1913 the third child of Leon D. and Madeleine L. (Scott) Parker at the family home 12-1/2 miles southeast of Akron, on their homestead.
Vera attended Rosa Lee and Missouri Valley Schools where the majority of her classmates were her cousins. When she started high school, her mother and younger siblings moved to Akron for school, coming home on weekends, everyone was so sad Sunday evenings when they had to go back to town. The piano was hauled to Akron each school year in a lumber wagon so that Vera could continue playing. She graduated from Akron High School in 1931 and continued to attend the Akron Alumni until 2013.  She was one of the oldest graduates to attend the alumni for many years.
Vera married Russell R. Cunningham on August of 1936 and lived just two miles from her parents farm.  After the death of her husband in July of 1962, she moved to Otis to live with her mother, living in that same house until September of 2011 when she fell and could no longer live on her own.  She then moved to the Washington County Nursing Home.
Vera was a member of the Otis Presbyterian Church, sang in the choir, taught Sunday School, Vacation Bible School and was active in the Church Women's Organization.  Vera never passed up the opportunity to share her faith with others through bible stories and singing Sunday school songs to her nieces and nephew's.  God gives us all gifts and her gift was "the gift of gab".  She regularly visited those in nursing homes in Yuma, Brush and Akron, leading sing-a-longs in the Akron nursing home for many years.
Vera never had children of her own but she always said that her sister and brothers were very generous in sharing their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.  To all her family she was lovingly known as "Sis".
When Vera lived on her farm southeast of Akron she was a very avid gardener.  Always sharing the bounty of her harvest with family and friends.  She continued with her gardening after she moved to town but the majority of her garden was her beautiful flowers. Vera inherited the Parker clans love of music. She enjoyed playing the piano all her life, even playing for her fellow residents in the nursing home. Whenever there was a dance to attend you would find her cutting a fine jig and making sure everyone there got at least one spin around the floor. If you ever visited the Cunningham's home it was pretty much a tradition that sooner or later folks would be gathered around the piano singing as Vera tickled the ivories for the crowd.
She enjoyed traveling and made several bus and plane trips to visit her brother and family, in Washington, also making road trips to visit her family that lived out of the area.  She enjoyed taking the Senior Bus tours to where ever they were going.  One of her most meaningful trips was her visit to the Holy Land in 1979.
One of her favorite pastimes was keeping in touch with family and friends by sending letters typed out on her Royal manual  typewriter. One of her very first typewriters can be seen at the Akron Rockhouse Museum. Vera loved spending time and visiting with family and friends.  Big celebrations were held for her 90th, 95th and her 100th birthday.
She was preceded in death by her husband Russell Cunningham, her parents Leon and Madeleine Parker, brothers Millard (Bill), Gerald, Stanley (Swede), James (Cyril) and sister Ramona (Ree) Shafer.  She is survived by her many nieces and nephews from all generations.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the donor's choice or to the First Presbyterian Church in Otis or the Otis Cemetery Board. 
Memorial services will be conducted Saturday November 7 at 10:30 a.m.  at the First Presbyterian Church of Otis.  There will be a private family inurnment service at a later date.
Published in Akron News-Reporter on Oct. 21, 2015
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