It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Anne Elizabeth Cunningham—our mother, sister, sister-in-law, aunt, cousin and friend —on Sunday, September 26, 2021 in Fairview, Alberta. Anne passed away peacefully in her sleep at the age of 90. She is survived by her son Murray Cunningham, his wife Maureen Hunter, her brother Louis Kronast and his wife Caroline, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Anne was born August 13, 1931 in the Peace Country region known as Red Star to Joseph and Monica Kronast. She was the oldest of their two children. The family farmed in Erin Lodge, Alberta. Anne left the farm at an early age to pursue her education and quickly became an educator herself, as a teaching assistant in the Peace River McLennan regions. After a very brief time studying at the University of Alberta, the Alberta government, in desperate need of rural one-room school teachers, asked Anne to leave the University and return to the Peace, to operate schools from Bluesky to Highland Park. She eventually became an elementary teacher at St. Thomas More Catholic school in Fairview and enjoyed a 35 year career. If you attended Catholic school in the Central Peace, Anne was probably your teacher!
Along the way she met a man also from Red Star, Roy Cunningham, and the two were married January 26th, 1956. They were blessed with one son, Murray Cunningham, born in 1959.
Anne will be fondly remembered by hundreds, if not thousands, of elementary school students. From reading to arithmetic to music to cursive writing, the list of subjects she taught is endless. Anne instilled a sense of wonder for the natural beauty of her beloved coulees, and always encouraged healthy outdoor activity. Most importantly she taught her students to be good citizens and to do the right thing for their family, friends and community. Her strong Catholic faith kept her in good spirits to her final days.
A celebration of her life will be held Saturday October 2, 2021 at 1:00pm. Unfortunately due to Covid restrictions, attendance will be by invitation only, however the service will be available to attend by joining on our livestream by clicking here. In lieu of flowers, donations in her name will be gratefully accepted by the Alberta SPCA, a cause so very dear to her heart.
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