Jerry Thompson Cooper, 70 of Hardy, passed away Sunday, March 24, 2013, after a brief illness. Jerry was predeceased by his father, Henry L. Cooper, and his daughter, Tammy Lynne Cooper Green. Jerry is survived by his wife of 50 years, Dorothy Bunch Cooper; mother, Meredith M. Cooper; brother and sister-in-law, David and Nancy Cooper; granddaughter, Cheryl Dalton; great-grandsons, Evan Cooper Phillippe and Austin Wayne Rutrough; uncle, Marshall Monroe; aunt, Clarice Craig; father-in-law, Raymond Bunch; sister-in-law and husband, Barbara and Earl Thompson; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends, including special friends, Scott Kidman, Charles and Susan Whately, Monty Sanders, Brandon Taylor, Lynn Thompson; and faithful and loving dog, China.
Jerry graduated from Brookfield High School in 1960. He went on to get a business degree from VCU, a masters degree in insurance underwriting, and a masters degree from Radford University in special education. Jerry was a CLU and sold insurance for Prudential, Metropolitan, and National Teachers
Association. He was a member of the Western Virginia Referees Association for 26 years. He taught school in Bedford County, and retired from Lord Botetourt High School after teaching over 20 years.
Jerry was a lover of life and everyone he met along the way. He was a devoted and loving son, husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, and if you were lucky enough to be his friend, your life was forever changed by this remarkable man. Jerry will be loved and remembered for many things, but what we might most remember is Jerry's way of making a difference in the lives of his students," his kids" as he called them. This is not something that Jerry learned, it is just who he was.
He taught from his heart, realizing that holding a hand and being a good listener could be the most important part of a child's education. It is as he knew, not just about their time in school, it was about their life. Always love yourself, value yourself, know that I care, and you are never alone. But then, that was Jerry. His heart and his door were always open.
You will be greatly missed, but never forgotten.
There will be no prior visitation. A memorial service celebrating Jerry's life will be held 2 p.m. Friday, March 29, 2013, at Oakey's Vinton Chapel with Pastor Mickey Derrow officiating. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Jerry Thompson Cooper Scholarship Fund c/o 1619 Truman Hill Road, Hardy, VA 24101.
Online condolences may be directed to www.oakeys.com