Donald Eugene Cooper, Sr., lovingly known as “Dad”, “Pappy Don”, “Pops”, “Coop” and “Big D”, went to heaven to be with his Lord and Savior on Monday, January 10, 2022. All who knew and loved Don are heartbroken to have him leave this earthly existence, but we know he is at peace.
Don was born a fraternal twin on July 5th, 1943, to Charles and Arletta Cooper. Growing up in Bedford County near the banks of Dunnings creek, Don developed a love for the outdoors. He always had a fishing story to share about the big one that got away and the even bigger ones he caught. He enjoyed fishing Shawnee and Raystown lakes and hunting all types of game all over Bedford and Cambria County.
After graduating from Chestnut Ridge High School in 1961, Don served in the U.S. Army (E5) during Vietnam working as an illustrator at the first Army headquarters in NYC, NY. He married his high school sweetheart, Marie (Dovala) Smith in 1963 in NYC. Together they had three children, Christopher, Donald Jr., and Theresa.
After his time in the service, Don returned to Bedford County to work at Bethlehem Steel Corporation where he retired after 30 years of service.
Don had always been active in his community in some way. Don served as President of Chestnut Ridge Ambulance Association. He enjoyed singing baritone in the Bedford United Methodist choir and sang with the Harmony Hill Singers for many years.
Don remarried to Janis (Young) Cooper. They both spent much of their time tending to their beautiful backyard in their home in Shellsburg. Their backyard was the host of many family picnics which included throwing horseshoes till dark and eating way too much good food.
Don was perfectly imperfect and worked hard to see the good in others. He was quick to lend a hand. He was quick to share a smile and positive comment. He loved being with his family and close friends. Our hearts hurt knowing he is no longer with all of us, but we must rejoice that he is now at peace and in heaven with his wife Janis, oldest son Christopher, both his parents and his siblings (Larry Cooper, Carol (Cooper) Egolf and Ronald Cooper).
So many will miss him including children Donald Cooper (wife Michele) and Theresa (Cooper) Miles (husband Brandon), his stepchildren, Wendy Young (Kyle Einhorn) and Sheri (Young) Celtruda and grandchildren Andrew Miles, Clayton Cooper, Sarah Celtruda, Carson Cooper, Zachary Miles, and Luke Celtruda in addition to many extended family members and very close friends.
Don and Janis’s precious Yorkie named “Peanut” will likely miss him the most.
Family and friends are invited to come together at 10:30 AM at Bedford United Methodist Church on Saturday, January 29th. Service will begin at 11:00 AM led by close friend Jim Miller. Luncheon to follow at the church. All are welcome!
A celebration of life event is also being planned for late spring to thank everyone who helped both Donald and Janis Cooper over these past few years. Please consider a gift in Donald’s honor to your local hospital or hospice caregivers.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Donald Cooper Sr., please visit our floral store.