Christina Cunningham

Published 9:39 am Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Christina M. Cunningham, 50, of Springfield, Ill., passed away Thursday, October 7, 2021, at Springfield Memorial Hospital.

Christie was born on December 21, 1970, in Springfield, Illinois, the daughter of Edward J. and Caroline L. Cunningham.

Christie was a graduate of Springfield High School and went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Eastern Illinois University.  During that time, she was actively involved in InterVarsity Christian Fellowship as well as the Navigators.  During her involvement with the Navigators, she participated in a mission trip to Taiwan.  Christie was a lifelong member of First Presbyterian Church.

After finishing college, she returned home to be an elementary education teacher for District 186 and a preschool teacher for St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.  During that time, she became disabled with mitochondrial disease and moved to the Mary Bryant Home.  While at the Mary Bryant Home for 15 years, she enjoyed competing in the Special Olympics and participating in multiple outings, especially trips to see the St. Louis Cardinals and shows at the Springfield Muni Opera.

Christie loved the St. Louis Cardinals, musical theatre, vanilla lattes, and McDonald’s French fries.  She was a fun-loving person, kind, patient, and always considerate of others.  Christie was a good listener and a great keeper of secrets.  She always had a smile on her face and maintained a positive outlook on life even through multiple health issues.

She is survived by her parents; three siblings, Clark (Martha) Cunningham of Springfield, Carrie (Mark) Pennell of Sherman, and Curtis (Theresa) Cunningham of Monona, Wis.; and nieces and nephews, Jake, Olivia, and Mia Pennell, and Allison, Vivian, and Frederick Cunningham.

She was preceded in death by her maternal grandparents, Frank and Peggy Lanham; and paternal grandparents, Jim and Elizabeth Cunningham.

Funeral Ceremony:  Was 4:30 p.m. on Monday, October 18, 2021, at First Presbyterian Church, 321 South 7th St., Springfield, with Rev. Susan Phillips officiating.  A visitation was held following the ceremony from 5:00 until 7:00 p.m.  Illinois COVID-19 guidance was followed, requiring face coverings.

Graveside services will be held Friday, October 29, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. at Oak City Cemetery, Bainbridge, Ga.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Springfield Muni Opera, 815 East Lake Shore Dr., Springfield, IL  62712 or the Springfield Special Olympics, 900 Christopher Lane, Suite 7, Springfield, IL  62712.

The family is being served by Boardman-Smith Funeral Home, 800 S. Grand Ave. West, Springfield.

Please visit boardmansmith.com to offer your condolences.

Ivey Funeral Home, 502 S. Scott Street, Bainbridge, Ga., is in charge of local arrangements.