In Memory

Esther  Cross

1209, 300 Woodhaven Drive, Hilton Head Island, SC 29928

 (843) 842-3134          E-mail:

Esther "Sunny" Cross

Esther Wilkinson Cross (“Sunny”), 88, died peacefully in her sleep at Bayview Manor in Beaufort, SC on January 7, 2012. Sunny was born in Bronxville, New York, on September 23, 1923, to the former Esther Virginia Farrell, who died in childbirth, and Wardell Wilkinson. After her father’s death, she lived in Bronxille with her grandparents, John and Nellie Farrell. She attended Dana Hall and the College of William and Mary.  Her first marriage was to Homer Crawford, with whom she had a daughter, Candace Curtright Crawford, on July 28, 1947. Her second marriage was to Wilbur Cross (“Will”), on May 2, 1953, in the Reformed Church of Bronxville, with whom she had three daughters, Melissa Susan, born on March 8, 1954, Alison Ann, born January 17, 1958, and Jennifer Jane, born on May 29, 1960. She and her family were also residents of Lake Sunapee, NH, as a vacation home, where the Cross family has had roots going back to the 1890s.

            In addition to meeting the demands of bringing up four daughters and running a household in Bronxville, Sunny held an active  partnership in a real estate firm, as well as engaging in extensive volunteer work for the church and community. In 1990 she and Will moved to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Sunny was a member of the Junior League of Bronxville since 1954, and continued to be an active member in Hilton Head, where she served as Chairman of the Sustainers branch. Sunny also undertook numerous charitable assignments at the First Presbyterian Church, and participated in educational programs that eventually led to positions as a Stephen Minister, Stephen Leader, and Deacon. She also undertook studies in a program of Education for the Ministry at the Sewanee, University of the South, that enhanced her work in spiritual affairs, and led to her teaching in the field. For the past eleven years, Sunny and Will have lived at the Seabrook retirement community on Hilton Head, where they have remained active. In recent months, Sunny was living at Bayview Manor, where she made several friends and was provided with loving and compassionate care during her final days.

          Sunny is survived by her husband and her four daughters, Candace Smith, of Lake Bluff, Illinois; Melissa Cross, of Nashville, Tennessee; Alison Cross Blatz, of Wellesley, Mass., and Jennifer Cross, of Atlanta, Georgia; and by four grandchildren: Haley and Rachel Blatz, and Corey and Heather Smith. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to The Endowment Fund of the Junior League of Savannah (state in Memo: In memory of Esther W. Cross); P.O. Box 23545, Savannah, Ga 314 

"Spring Snows" by Farrell Cross (Sunny Cross)

"Dawn on the Marsh" by Farrell Cross (Sunny Cross)


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