Cover photo for Kenneth "Ken" Cunningham's Obituary
Kenneth "Ken" Cunningham Profile Photo
1942 Kenneth 2023

Kenneth "Ken" Cunningham

October 2, 1942 — November 1, 2023

Kenneth Wayne Cunningham, 81, of Devol, OK, passed away November 1, 2023 in Wichita Falls, TX. A Celebration of Life will be held Tuesday, November 7, 2023, at 2:00 pm at the First Baptist Church of Devol, OK with Pastor Justin Cardwell officiating. 

He was born on October 2, 1942 in Portales, NM to Norval Grant and Bonnie Christine Rankin Cunningham. Ken grew up in west Texas and eastern New Mexico and graduated from House High School (NM) in1961. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Eastern New Mexico University in 1967. Ken was ENMU’s first four-year letterman in rodeo and was instrumental in starting the rodeo program and its early recruiting in 1963. He competed in saddle bronc riding, where he was the SW Region champion and led ENMU to its first regional title.  

On August 15, 1968, Ken married Exa Elizabeth Gray of Artesia, NM. He began teaching at Borden County ISD in Gail, TX. In 1969 he pursued a career training horses in Illinois and New Mexico, settling in Devol in 1976. In 1985 he returned to his career in education where he taught in Electra, TX and Grandfield, OK. He retired from Burkburnett ISD in 2007. Ken and Exa were blessed with two sons: Nicholas Grant Cunningham and Richard Gray Cunningham.

Ken began making spurs and bits for ranch and rodeo cowboys and for horse show equestrians in the 1980s and continued until 2020. He also enjoyed raising longhorn cattle on their land along the Red River. And his pride and joy were his two sons and his granddaughter Ginger. He was a member of Texoma Cowboy Church and Devol First Baptist Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by Exa, his wife of 55 years, a sister Wanda (Larry) Smith of Gail TX and a brother Rick (Sandra) Cunningham of Ranger TX. Also, his sons Nick (Devol), Rich (Wichita Falls) and granddaughters Ginger Madison Beth Cunningham (and her mother Stacey Cunningham of Wichita Falls) and Vannesa Faith Loera (McKinney). Plus, those who called him Uncle Ken: nieces Kristy, Kelly, Mandy, Lynsey, MarJane, Jennifer, Suzette and CaraBeth; nephews Perry, Brad, Bryan, Brett, Kin, Johnny and Michael. 

To send flowers to the family in memory of Kenneth "Ken" Cunningham, please visit our flower store.


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