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Opal “Sunnie” Kuhleman

  • On June 5, 2023

Opal “Sunnie” Kuhleman, age 85, has completed her final remodeling project and spread the last bags of mulch in her earthly garden.  Sunnie passed away quietly in her sleep on May 24, 2023 while contemplating paint colors for her next interior design project.

As a flight attendant, refinisher of antique furniture, seamstress, paralegal, bricklayer, devoted interior and landscape designer, and purveyor of legal advice, Sunnie has moved on to tilling her strawberry fields in heaven.  For those willing to stop by and help pull weeds, she has promised a bushel of all that you can pick, and expert advice on wall coverings and furniture selection. Legal guidance and fundraising suggestions will be provided free of charge.

Remembrances of Sunnie conjures memories of “mom” wearing a nightgown, sipping a glass of red wine, while running an orbital sander on her current piece of reclaimed furniture. While she could drive a dump truck and tractor like a farmer, she was also known for being “that attractive lady in a silk chiffon dress on the dance floor”, whom all eyes were drawn towards.  Mom’s exquisite taste and desire to enhance everyone’s surroundings will be missed by those who had the pleasure to know her.  When friends and family had questions about most anything, they turned to mom for answers.  Mom was around long before the Internet for those seeking advice.

As head of the family Sunnie was renowned for her elegant dinner parties, lavish home cooked meals, desire to help and educate others, as well as her excessive book and tool storage in any vehicle that she drove. Sunnie could wrestle a sewing machine to produce a wedding dress as easily as she could a wheel barrow full of decorative stone.  Most libraries, fabric stores, nurseries, and antiques shops knew her by name, where she was often seen planning her next adventure.  Friends and family will dearly miss this creative and spirited lady.

Sunnie is preceded in death by sisters Mildred Atkinson, Elsie Clevenger, and Nelda Pierski, brother Oland Atkinson and ex-husband Milton Kuhleman.  She is survived by sister Lucille Laszlo, and Ex-husband Bill Ruggieri.  She will forever be cherished by her children Michael and Kellie.

A private ceremony in her honor will be attended by friends and family.

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