Carolyn "Tillie" (Tilton) Cunningham (1926 - 2018)

  • "I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your mom carolyn...."
    - Julie Rosers
  • "I knew Tillie from her volunteer work at St. Andrews in the..."
    - Therese Larsen
  • "Met George thru the Cal Grid Club of Sacramento in 1980. He..."
    - Patty Bonnstetter
  • "Sincere condolences from the Woolliscroft family. We love..."
    - Mary & John Woolliscroft
  • "With loving memories of a longtime family friend who was..."
    - Ken & Jayne Hopwood

Born on April 28, 1926 in San Francisco, to parents Ronald and Evelyn Tilton, Carolyn, a loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend to all who knew her, lost her valiant battle with colon cancer on July 3, 2018, at the age of 92. Carolyn Tilton graduated from the University of California Berkeley in 1948 and was a member of Gamma Phi Beta Sorority. Carolyn, nicknamed "Tillie", was always a warm, gregarious woman, a loving mother, talented gardener, and a gracious hostess. She worked as a secondary school substitute teacher from 1965 to 1985, working in Stockton, Oakland, Sacramento, and Rancho Cordova. Carolyn and her husband, George, met in college on a blind date and were married after graduation. They spent much of their married life moving from place to place after being transferred by the Pacific Telephone Company. "Tillie" always went out of her way to see to it that her family felt at home, with many friends and activities, even if they didn't stay in a town for more than two years. They lived in Sacramento, San Anselmo, Napa, Stockton, and Piedmont, before returning to Sacramento in 1968. There they stayed until George's retirement in 1986, at which time they moved to Ben Lomond near their family's long-time summer cabin. During their life after their children were grown, Tillie and George were busy with many activities, but perhaps the one that gave them the most joy was their involvement with the Tamalpais Swim Club and the Masters Swim Program. Even after George's death in 2005, Tillie continued volunteering and swimming for many years. St. Andrews Church in Ben Lomond will miss the many volunteer hours she spent in their garden, in the church guild, among many other church activities. She was also a member of the PEO sisterhood in the Santa Cruz area and enjoyed many special friendships thru that involvement. Predeceased by her husband, George; her parents; and brother, Jack. Tillie is survived by her daughters, Kate (David), Nyna (Bill), and Mary Lou (Rex); five grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and countless friends and family. The world is an emptier place without her. A memorial of her wonderful life will be held on July 16th at Bret Harte Hall at Roaring Camp in Felton, CA beginning at 2:00. In lieu of flowers, donations made in her honor to St. Andrews Church in Ben Lomond, Hospice of Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz Masters Swim Program, or Roaring Camp Railroad, would be appreciated.
Published in The Sacramento Bee from July 13 to July 15, 2018