Clarence Ronald Cooper, 93, of Granite City, Illinois passed away at 7:42 p.m. on Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at DePaul Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri. He was born December 21, 1918 in Thurber, Texas, the son of the late Clarence Jackson and Florence (Pester) Cooper. He married Jacqueline Grayson (Kaiser) Cooper on August 9, 1940 at the First Assembly of God Church in Granite City and she preceded him in death on May 21, 2008.
He retired in 1984 from Dow Chemical after 30 years of dedicated service with Consolidated Aluminum. The United States Army Air Corp veteran proudly served his country with the 8th Air Force 2nd Division during World War II in the 453rd Bombardment Group. He had served in Old Buckingham, England from 1942 until 1945 and had flown in nine combat missions. He enjoyed his years of blacksmithing and was a member of the American Blacksmith Association of North America and the Illinois Blacksmith Association. He had attended the First Assembly of God Church in Granite City and was the eldest member of the Granite City V.F.W. Post #1300. He was alumni of Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in studio Art and was a big brother in the Gamma Sigma Sigma Sorority with his daughters. He enjoyed his days of fishing, hunting, art, jewelry making and knife making and will be remembered for the love and special times shared with his family and friends.
He is survived by two sons and one daughter-in-law, William "Craig" and Anna Marie Cooper of Brighton and David Ronald Cooper of Granite City; one daughter and son-in-law, Leann and Phil Mercier of Granite City; four grandchildren, Diana Behl of Germany, David William Cooper of Granite City, Jamie Rausch of Edwardsville and Jake Mercier of Granite City; great grandchildren; one great-great granddaughter; one sister, Jackie Poppe of Glen Carbon; other extended family and friends.
In addition to his beloved wife and parents, he was preceded in death by one daughter, Karen Cooper-Price and two sisters, Mary Rombach and Clarice Flannery.
In celebration of his life, visitation will be at Irwin Chapel, 3960 Maryville Road in Granite City on Friday, April 20, 2012 from 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. where funeral services will be held on Saturday, April 21, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. with Reverend Byron Wampler officiating. Burial with full military honors will be at Sunset Hill Memorial Estates in Glen Carbon. Memorials may be made to the American Cancer Society or to a charity of one's choice and may be accepted at the funeral home.
Founded in 1913, the American Cancer Society(ACS) consists of more than two million volunteers and staff collaborating with nearly 18 million cancer survivors, their families and supporting donors united nationwide to conquer cancer. To accomplish its mission, the ACS collaborates with other voluntary health agencies, community-based organizations, business leaders, legislators, and educators at the national and grassroots levels to identify and address nationwide and local cancer issues through education, patient service, research and advocacy programs.