One of Central Iowa's female business pioneers, Lois Copple, former CEO of the Whylie Eye Care Centers, passed away at home on October 11, 2016 at the age of 88.
Lois was born in 1928 in Chicago, IL to Francis and Dr. Maurice Rosin, O.D. The family eventually moved to Dallas, TX where she graduated from Highland Park High School. She attended Southern Methodist University and the University of Illinois, where she was a member of the Delta Phi Epsilon sorority.
Lois married the love of her life, Ralph Copple in 1953. Ralph and his brother, Clarence, owned City Supply Corporation, a Des Moines wholesale plumbing company which is still in business today. In 1980 when Ralph sold City Supply, Lois embarked on her business career, which was as distinguished as it was lengthy.
Lois purchased Whylie Eye Care Centers from Joe Whylie, and grew the optical business from two to twelve locations. In 2013, Lois retired and turned the business over to her sons, Vincent and Kenton. She was the company spokesperson for 33 years, appearing in many memorable TV commercials, which always ended with "Come see us".
Even in retirement in Las Vegas, Whylie Eye Care Centers was never far from her thoughts. She kept up-to-date on all important business dealings and when in Iowa, she loved to continually help train new employees.
Lois had many passions. Her family and faith were very important to her. She was a devoted wife, dedicated mother and loving grandmother.
Travel was a great passion for Lois, exploring the world with her family and friends. She also loved playing cards and was an accomplished bridge player. In addition, many times Lois and her dear friend, Berenice Moss, could be found at Prairie Meadows enjoying the poker tables.
Lois' passions are evident in her list of accomplishments and life's work. She was President of the Jewish Federation of Women, a Board Member of Temple B'nai Jeshurun, Iowa Senior Life Center board member, chair of the Life Center Golden Ball multiple times, co-chaired a fundraising event for the Weizmann Institute in Israel, campaign manager for the 1970 Democratic Lieutenant Governor nominee, runner-up for Entrepreneur of the Year, Outstanding Woman of the Year for the Chrysalis Foundation, docent at the Des Moines Art Center, a member of the Greenwood School PTA and a member of the Duplicate Bridge Club in Las Vegas and Des Moines.
Lois is survived by her sons, Vincent (Sue) and granddaughter, Regan; Kenton (Dr. Lisa) and grandsons, Kade and Carson; and son, Clayton. She is also survived by many special nephews, nieces, cousins and friends. Lois was preceded in death by her husband, parents and brother, Richard Rosin.
Per her request, a private family service was held. A reception to celebrate her life will be announced at a later date. Memorials may be made to the Ralph Copple Camp Fund at Temple B'nai Jeshurun.
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Published by the Des Moines Register from Oct. 14 to Oct. 16, 2016.