It is with great sadness that the family of April Joy Dunn announces her death on August 8. 2020 after a long emotional battle.
April was born on January 25, 1973 in Homerville, Georgia to Cecil and Brenda Dunn. She spent the first 10 years of her life there. April was the baby of the family joining two sisters and two brothers. Growing up, April's family was a happy and adventurous one. Many times after her siblings and Dad would leave for school, April and her Mom would jump in the car and take off on a day trip. They would be back before everyone came home from school. It was their little secret.
April's family traveled often. When her Dad was offered a job with the Dolores County School District in Colorado they were all excited to begin a new chapter of their lives. While the family was all together, the plan was to spend a couple of years experiencing the Southwest. That couple of years turned into more than 20. The family loved this part of the country and had many wonderful times.
April made many friends throughout life. One special friend, Chris Wright, became her husband in 1994. To this union a baby girl was born, Karisa Rae. Karisa was the light of April's world and remained the very best thing that happened in her life. Although April and Chris' marriage ended, they remained devoted in the co-parenting of Karisa.
The last years of April's life were often very difficult. Her family did not know she was in an abusive relationship until her dad died in September 2018. She hid it well, as victims often do. Upon returning home, she found the strength to end the relationship and wanted to become healthier mentally, spiritually and physically. April failed many times. She turned to alcohol and prescription medication to numb her feelings and the repercussions that were coming from her attempt to end the relationship.
The last month of her life, April was making plans to go to Florida to visit her mother, to sit beside the ocean and envision a new life. Everyone she talked to told her family of her excitement. If heaven has a beach, she is there.
Leaving behind to mourn her are: her daughter, Karisa Wright of Durango, CO; her mother Brenda Dunn of Live Oak, FL; sisters Shawn Valdez of Cortez, CO and Lesley Foster (Al) of Beaumont, TX; her brothers John Dunn of Montrose, CO and Adam Dunn of Live Oak, FL; as well as a host of nieces and nephews who adored their Auntie.
Because April was a victim of gaslighting and domestic violence, her family has set up a way, that people who want to honor her memory, can do so. Donations in April's memory can be made to Renew, Inc. which offers many services for victims of domestic abuse, including a safe house. A Benefit for Renew, in April's memory, will be held in October.
Published in The Journal on Aug. 24, 2020.