James Robert "Bob" Cope passed away Thursday, July 18, 2019 at his home in Atwood, CO. Private family services will be held at a later date. Bob was born February 6, 1937 in Deadwood, SD to Jake David and Lila (Brown) Cope. He was raised in Fort Collins, CO and graduated from Fort Collins High School in 1955 and from CSU in 1960 with a BSME engineering degree. He married Jeanette Jones in beautiful downtown Atwood in 1958 while attending school. He was commissioned as a 2 nd Lieutenant in the USAF and served successfully for 3 years in the 310 th B-47 Bob Wing stationed at Schilling AFB, Kansas (Near Salina) from 1960 through 1963. He served during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962. He received a Commendation medal upon discharge and was promoted to reserve Captain while serving in the inactive USAF reserves from 1963 to 1968. Upon release from active duty Bob joined the Pratt and Whitney Aircraft Company in West Palm Beach, Florida. He worked 2 years as a Test Engineer on the SR71 Blackbird jet engine being developed for the CIA. Bob and his family moved back to Colorado where he worked a short time at Sundstrand's Torpedo Engine development factory near Arvada, Colorado. When IBM built and opened their plant site in Boulder, Bob joined IBM again, as a test engineer. At IBM you had to be "Juicier" to be successful and thus Bob went back to school at night for 3 years on the GI Bill and he graduated in 1971 with a BSEE degree. After transferring to a Flexible Media Data Recorder Engineering Design department his career took off. His last major assignment was a joint design project in Hursley, England for 1 year. Bob received IBM's First Level Invention award in 1977. Bob managed 3 different engineering departments at IBM. After leaving IBM 12 years later, Bob worked for a number of small startup computer companies, serving as an Engineering Manager at two firms besides IBM. He also worked as a design engineer and was an expert in computer simulation of designs in development. While working for these smaller firms he trained himself in Finite Element Computer modeling which helped his career as a consultant. He also was the key player in getting StorageTek to convert over to Computer Aided Design before other firms did. He finished his engineering career working as a design consultant working from his Atwood farm home. Bob jumped into starting his own company; COPEX Coep in 1995 designing and building an advanced golf club. He came very close to completing a joint development contract with Calloway Golf of California. This effort failed but Bob never had any reservations or regrets, and that experience helped push him into working for himself. Along with some personal U.S. Patents, Bob prepared and was issued by the USPTO, and patents obtained by employer(s) with Bob listed as an inventor; resulted in 13 U.S. Patents and 6 Technical Articles published in the IBM Technical Journal in his career. He made significant contributions to the shipping of computer data storage machines at IBM, StorageTek and Cipher Data in California and Benchmark Storage Innovations. Bob's last engineering job was with Wisdom Industries of Merino, Colorado and he stated many times that doing computer based stress analysis on carnival rides was the best job he ever had. He stated he would never ride a carnival ride. As a hobby from 2001 through 2018, Bob prepared and published a total of 200+ political cartoons for Sterling's Journal-Advocate. His very last job was helping at the Northeaster 18 Pro Shop which helped him keep his weight down. Bob is survived by his wife Jeanette (Jones) Cope; oldest son Jim Cope of Peoria, AZ; daughter Joan Pinto of Orinda, CA and youngest son John Cope currently living in Manila, Philippines; 6 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren; Uncle Edwin Brown of Fort Collins, CO and brother Larry Cope of Medford, OR. Bob enjoyed a good life, married to Jeanette for 60+ years, and had 3 children that all make him proud at being a good father. His Bucket List is empty. Contributions may be made in Robert's memory to the Hospice of the Plains, 100 Broadway Street, Suite 1A, Sterling, CO 80751.
Published by Journal Advocate on Jul. 24, 2019.