George Earthman Cooper died peacefully with family at her side early Easter morning, Sunday, the 31st of March 2013. Her family had honored her 90th birthday the preceding day. George was born on Good Friday, the 30th of March 1923, in Nashville, Tennessee, to Georgia Trigg Bell and William Fletcher Earthman of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. She grew up riding horses through the Middle Tennessee countryside, excelling in academics and dreaming of seeing the world. Her father had named her George, which was always a striking contradiction to her beauty and natural southern charms. She never knew a stranger and her curiosity abounded. She received full scholarships to attend Sullins College in Bristol, Virginia and then Vanderbilt University, from which she graduated Phi Beta Kappa. While attending graduate school in international studies at SMU, she met and shortly after married Theodore Woolsey Cooper, a transplanted Yankee living in Houston. They were married for 58 years and lived in Houston until his death in 2005. |
George was always involved in her family's lives and in giving back to her community. She tried to attend as many of her children's tennis matches, football and basketball games, and school plays as possible. Meanwhile, she was an energetic member of the Junior League of Houston, The Garden Club of Houston, served as Chairman of the Kappa Alpha Theta Antiques Show, as President of the Houston (Women's) Symphony Society, Chairman of the Docents of Bayou Bend, and as member of the Board of Trustees of St. John's School. In her later years, she and Ted enjoyed traveling and spending time with family at their farm in Burton, Texas. George was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta Women's Fraternity, First Presbyterian Church, The Antiques Study Group, and the Houston Country Club.
George leaves four children, their spouses and children to remember her beautifully lilting southern accent and her genuine interest and delight in each person she met: her daughters Esther Nicholas (Nicole) Cooper, MD, of Dallas, and Chaille Linn Cooper of Houston; her sons Theodore Woolsey Cooper, Jr. and wife Rebecca Raine Cooper of Houston, and the Reverend William Earthman Cooper and wife Ceca Cannon Cooper of Sioux Falls, SD; her grandchildren Helen Inglish Cooper of Houston, Theodore Woolsey Cooper, III of Austin and Michael Walls Cooper of Houston, Camille Yasmine Harlan and husband Miguel Angel Blanco Alcalde of Barcelona, Spain, John Cannon Harlan and wife Rachel Michelle Harlan, Sam Drury Cooper, Lucy-George Cooper, and Jeb Earthman Cooper, all of Sioux Falls. George is also survived by her beloved brother Bill's children: William F. Earthman III (Melissa), Elizabeth W. Earthman, John C.B. Earthman (Mary), all of Nashville, TN, and Catherine E. Polk (Tom) of Atlanta. George is also survived by sisters-in-law Dorothy (Mrs. William Fletcher, Jr.) B. Earthman, of Nashville, TN; Jocelyn (Mrs. John Nicholas) Cooper of Bozeman, MT; and Helen (Mrs. Jacob) Cooper of Norwalk, CT.
Her life was also blessed with numerous Coopers stretching from Idaho to New England. She was especially grateful for Mary Kay Cooper, Zizi Asfour and her daughter Chaille, who moved to Houston and spent wonderful time with her.
She was preceded in death by her beloved parents, husband, brother William Fletcher Earthman, Jr. and dear nephew Thomas Tyne Earthman.
George and family have been exceedingly grateful for the loving care and skillful assistance she has received over the years from Francis Garcia and Bernice Perkins and, more recently, from caregivers Joyce Whitaker, Veronica Foster, Janet Lancelin, Lisa Williams and Billie Witter, as well as from the staff at the Willowick, the Hallmark, and physicians and staff at Methodist Hospital, Bayou Manor and Houston Hospice.
A memorial service is to be conducted at two o'clock in the afternoon on Friday, the 5th of April, at First Presbyterian Church, 5300 Main Street in Houston, where Dr. Bill Heston, Executive Pastor, is to officiate. Immediately following, all are invited to greet the family during a reception to be held in the nearby Living Room.
In lieu of customary remembrances, memorial contributions may be directed to Kappa Alpha Theta Foundation, Attn: Theta Charity Antique Show of Houston Alumni Scholarship, 8740 Founders Rd., Indianapolis, IN, 46268; Bayou Bend Collection, P.O. Box 6826, Houston, TX, 77265; First Presbyterian Church, 5300 Main St., Houston, TX, 77004; or to the
Published in Houston Chronicle from Apr. 3 to May 2, 2013