Carol Jean (Walker) Willingham, daughter of Carstell Artensa and Priscilla Bell (Stinson) Walker, transitioned peacefully on December 12, 2022 in Cincinnati, Ohio, surrounded and embraced by family. She was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on December 11, 1941, shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Carol grew up the fourth of five children in the East End and graduated from Withrow High School in 1960. She was a member of St. Mark United Methodist Church until she converted to Catholicism when she married Oscar Willingham in 1964. She bore six children from this union.
After graduating from Withrow, Carol went to nursing school to become a certified practical nurse and thereafter, worked at Drake Hospital. She retired from American Airlines after 25+ years of service. After retiring from American Airlines she worked part-time for the family business.
Carol loved music, in particular, Ray Charles and the Temptations. She also had a love of animals, vegetable gardening, cooking and spending time with family. Carol had a witty sense of humor and could always make a joke that gets everybody laughing. Along with her love of music, came her love of dance. Later in age, she even attended African dance classes with her daughters. She passed her sense of humor, love of music, dance and love of cooking down to her children and grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by: her sisters, Rose Marie (Walker) Thomas and Nancy Ann (Walker) Caldwell; her brother, Richard Alan; sister-in-law, Norma Walker; brothers-in-law, Forney Mac Caldwell and Gordon Thomas; and great-granddaughter, Manyara.
She is survived by her: husband, Oscar; brothers, Carstell Walker and Carl Reid, daughter, Nayila Cynthia (Willingham) Richardson, son-in-law, Tyrone Richardson; son, Blake Willingham; son, Yahaya Willingham and daughter-in-law, Michele; daughter, Layla Willingham (David Smith); daughter, Tiyanna Willingham (James Latrail Smith); and son, Enye Willingham (Nicole Louis); grandchildren, Ibn, Tawheedah, Lubnaa, Haleigh, Hannah, Kali, Kasinda, Kallea, Ahkanni, Micah and Ezekiel; great-grandchildren, Jontell, Kamea and Zahera.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations are sent to USAgainstAlzheimers. https://www.usagainstalzheimers.org/networks/african-americans