Cindy Williams passed away May 20, 2019 due to complications from a severe blood disorder called Aplastic Anemia.
Though rare and treatable, she waged a brave three-year battle before succumbing to the disease. She was 59.
Born October 23, 1959, Cynthia Susanna Arevalo lived her entire life in Douglas. She called herself a “Loretto Rat” after her grade school and was an exceptional athlete at Douglas High School. She lettered in volleyball, tennis and track and field. She attended her father’s alma mater at Arizona State University before his illness brought her home. Upon his death in 1979, she enrolled at Cochise College and continued her love of sports adding swimming to volleyball and tennis while participating in the college’s intramural programs.
After Cochise, she began playing softball in the ladies’ league. She was a perennial All-Star and a tournament MVP as one of the league’s hardest hitters. A softball injury put her on a bike and she rode in numerous tours in Tucson and Cochise County. In 1993, she was the only female to complete 81-mile ride from Road Forks, N.M. to Douglas. Another injury took her off the saddle and into the pool where she would swim endless laps. Every time she got an injury, she would find another form of activity.
She started her Safeway career in 1981 and moved up quickly. Throughout her career, she was in a management or supervisor position, helping the company define its new Office Manager position. When Safeway began its Superior Customer Service program, Cindy was recognized by both customers and management as one of the top Customer Service employees in the state. She was awarded the highest citation from the company’s CEO. She inspired loyalty in the employees and had the confidence of her superiors, many of whom she trained.
Fundraising was another area where she excelled. She helped or organized charitable events for Easter Seals, American Cancer Society, Douglas ARC, the Steele Children’s Research Center through Elks Major Projects, to name a few. She also helped with many other individual fundraisers.
Her honesty and integrity made her management’s choice to close the Safeway store in 2011. She was the last Douglas employee to leave town and she began the daily drive to Willcox while caregiving for her mother. Shortly after her mother’s passing, she retired from Safeway after 32 years. She was working for the Cochise County Fairgrounds as assistant manager when she was diagnosed with Aplastic Anemia. Always optimistic and upbeat, she made everyone believe she was going to beat a disease that kills one out of every four patients.
Cindy was preceded in death by her wonderful parents, Louis and Bertha Arevalo. She is survived by the love of her life, Buddy Williams, her husband of 32 years. She also leaves behind her brother, Mike Arevalo, her beloved in-laws, Diane and Steve Soles, Gary (Suzanne) Williams and Garner (Shari) Williams, stepdaughter, Sommer and grandson, Gage. She had numerous godchildren including Ryan Stewart, Michael, Jr. and Branden Arevalo. Many nieces and nephews called her ‘Nina.’ The surviving members of the Three Amigas are her ‘sistas’ Lou Estrada and Monica Taylor. And she left hundreds with a heavy heart due to her passing.
Thanks to all that helped and supported her and her family during her struggles. Her friends kept her optimistic and she loved them all.
Donations can be made in her name to your favorite charities. Her favorites were DARC and the various Elks charities, especially the Children’s Research Center. And you can give blood. This was something that kept her going for three years.
A Rosary for Cindy will be recited at St. Luke’s Catholic Church on Saturday, June 1 at 10:30 a.m. followed by a Mass of the Resurrection at 11 a.m. A Celebration of Cindy’s Life will held at the Cochise County Fair Grounds at 1 p.m. the same day. Memories and condolences can be shared at www.BrownPageMortuary.com. Cindy lived her life with determination and an ear-to-ear smile. When you think of her, remember that she would want you to “Stay Strong”.
Brown Page Mortuary is in charge of arrangements, 364-3434.