We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Affinity Memorial Chapel
Debra Ann Woods-Cunningham was born on March 27, 1956 in Bluefield, West Virginia. Debra attended Pilgrim Baptist Church in her early years under the pastorate of Dr. M.J Mitchell. Her mother passed when she was thirteen, leaving her to manage the day-to-day functions of the house, which she took great pride in. She received her formal education from Columbus public schools and graduated from Mohawk High School in the top ten of her class. Shortly after graduation, she was married to Curtis Cunningham, and they relocated to Kentucky for a short time. Together, they were blessed with two sons, DeAndrey and DeShaun, and although they would part ways, Curtis and Debra remained good friends throughout their lifetime.
After coming back to Columbus, OH, Debra worked in retail, as a Bank Teller, and most notably, as a data entry operator. She was one of the first African American women to go into that line of work. Her main focus in life was the success of her family. her time consisted of taking care of her children, attending school and sporting events, and being in the company of family and good friends. Years later she rekindled a romance with her high school sweetheart, Harold Billingslea. Together, a son, Desmond, was conceived. Through Harold, she was introduced to one of her favorite sports, softball, in Southfield. Together they would join various teams, sometimes even competing against one another. Her passion for caring for people would drive her to pursue a career in healthcare. She worked as a STNA for the Bristol House, a local nursing home where she cared for the elderly. It was there she met Johnathan Dixon, and they began a relationship that would later birth her only daughter, April Dixon.
In the early 2000s, Debra and family moved to San Antonio Texas. There, she worked in telecommunication. She lived in Texas for a number of years before ultimately relocating back to Columbus. The drive for learning never left Debra. She was very enthusiastic about continuing her education, as she would graduate from the Everest Institute in 2013 for medical insurance billing and coding. She also went back to school and received her associate’s degree for applied science in medical assisting in 2017 from Miami-Jacobs Career College. She would utilize her new skillset to go back into healthcare field. Debra’s last job was a home healthcare worker at Lighthouse Community in 2019. During her later years, she enjoyed sightseeing, traveling, shopping, bingo, bowling, and most of all, spending quality time with her family.
One of her main goals in the last years of her life was meeting all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, a goal which she accomplished; it brought joy to her heart. She was very active within her community, often giving refuge to the homeless and providing food and encouragement to those in most need.
Blessed With 66 years of life, Debra Ann Cunningham was called home to Eternal Glory on June 14th, 2022.
She was preceded in death by her Parents, Clay and Martha Woods; Sister Wanda Woods; Brothers Henry, Kenneth, James, and Dwayne .
Those celebrating her legacy includes: children, DeAndrey Cunningham (Nicole), DeShaun Cunningham, Desmond Billingslea (Chelsey); daughter, April Dixon (Timothy); sister, Carol Bowman (Benjamin); brothers, David, Dennis, and Brian Woods; grandchildren, Shannon Barnes, DeAndrey Cunningham, Jr., Demetrius Cunningham, Dae’sha Cunningham, Daylen Cunningham, Damorion Cunningham, Jamika Summerview, DeMetriana Slaughter, Deshaun Cunningham Jr., Jazirah Spencer, Desmond Billingslea Jr., Daymien Billingslea, Dominick Billingslea, and Antwone Dixon; great-grandchildren, DeAndrey Cunningham III, Dieuson Cunningham, DaJon Cunningham, and Za’vaiya Cunningham; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. Debra was loved by many, and she will be truly missed.