Cover photo for Lyle William Cunningham, Jr.'s Obituary
Lyle William Cunningham, Jr. Profile Photo

Lyle William Cunningham, Jr.

“Heaven will get a makeover and we know now, God’s paintings and photos will be hung properly” Tommy Smith

Lyle W. Cunningham, 85, died peacefully at his home January 19th, 2020. His wife of 44 years, A.J. Cunningham and his daughter, Laura Cunningham Earle, were by his side.

Lyle was born in Santa Barbara, California. His family moved to Oklahoma when Lyle was quite young. He attended school in Chickasha where in high school he played football for the Chickasha Fighting Chicks. Lyle obtained his letter jacket in football and it was a prized possession for the remainder of his life.

Lyle was a member of the Air Force Reserves and was an avid Oklahoma Sooners fan. He was a season ticket holder and could be seen arriving at Sooner’s games in his 1950 Bentley. It was his game day vehicle. Lyle’s love for the Sooners football was surpassed only by his love for his family. Lyle attended the University of Oklahoma where he obtained his degree in Interior Design. He liked to tell his nieces and nephews how he would have to hitch hike from Chickasha to Norman to attend classes.

His design career began in Oklahoma City with A.J. Bullard and he then worked with The Tomorrow Shop until opening Cunningham Interiors in 1968. His business was located on or near W. Britton Road until Lyle retired in 2014. Cunningham Interiors doors were always flanked by a pair of stone lions that were part of the set carved for the State Capitol building. They became the trademark of Cunningham Interiors with many OKC residents recalling to Lyle how they played on the lions as children while their parents met with him in the shop. Lyle was ahead of his time in interior design and decorated homes and businesses all over the United States. One magazine writer described him as “the crown jewel of contemporary design”. Cunningham Interiors received recognition from The Oklahomans Reader’s Choice Awards several times, with the most recent being in 2019. Lyle had quite the legacy and was received recognition even after closing his business.

Lyle was preceded in death by his father, Lyle W. Cunningham, Senior, mother Mit Lou Cunningham, and his son Derek Cunningham. He is survived by his wife, A.J Cunningham, daughter Laura Cunningham Earle of Bryan, Texas, sister Diane Stribling of Bryan, Texas, along with many nieces, nephews, cousins, friends and two faithful dogs. Services for Lyle Cunningham will be held January 31st, 2020, at 2:00 pm at the Edmond Church of Christ, 801 Bryant Ave., Edmond, Oklahoma.

The family of Lyle Cunningham would like to extend their gratitude to Laura Lynn’s Home care and Excell Home Care & Hospice.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Edmond Church of Christ Search Ministry or a charity of your choice.

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