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Death of the Rev. Pete Cooper
The Rev. Charles D. Cooper (Pete) died on December 7, 2016. A memorial service will be held at St. John’s Church, Florence, at 11:00 am on Monday, December 12, 2016, with burial immediately following the service, in the St. John’s Memorial Garden. A reception will follow in the St. John’s Fellowship Hall.
Mr. Cooper was born in Lancaster, SC and was raised in Great Falls and Clinton, SC. A 1963 graduate of Clinton High School, Pete was a member of the Class of 1967 at the Citadel. He also received postgraduate degrees from Furman University and the University of the South (Sewanee) and was ordained in the Episcopal Church, 1981.
Pete served in the United States Marine Corps and was most proud of his fellow Marines. He spent many years as priest, teacher, coach, chaplain, assistant headmaster of several schools beginning his career with Christ Church Episcopal School in Greenville, SC and ending with Trinity Byrnes Collegiate School near Florence. He loved all of his school families. He also served in the Church as Assistant and Rector of several Parishes beginning at St. John’s Church in Columbia, retiring as Rector of St. John’s Church in Florence after 20 years, and continuing as Interim at The Church of the Ascension in Hagood, SC until the time of his death. His other service included St. David’s in Cheraw, SC and St. Cyprian’s in Lufkin, TX. Again, he loved all of his parish families.
Given the opportunity and encouragement by his parishes, Mr. Cooper spent much time working in the community. His many awards and recognitions were always met with the same answer, “Thanks to the Lord and to the many other people more deserving.” His greatest reward was seeing parishioners and others become engaged in community service leadership and volunteerism. Thanks be to God.
He is predeceased by his mother, Georgia Mildred Wade Cooper, his stepfather, Calvin Asa Cooper, and brother, James Robinson Cooper.
Pete’s greatest love, after the Lord, was his family. He is survived by his loyal wife of 47 years, Elizabeth Blair Blackwell Cooper (Florence); Son - Gordon Wade Cooper (Abbey), Charleston, SC; Daughter – Ashley Blair Cooper Scott (John III) Florence, SC; Daughter – Elizabeth Lyles Cooper Lyles (Brandon) Florence, SC; 6 grandchildren, Savannah, Gracie, Charlie, Ford, Dennis, and Woods; his sister, Beki Crogan (Rick) of Southport, FL, his brother, Francis Cooper (Jane) of Little River, SC, and his sister-in-law, Marilyn Cooper of Joanna, SC. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Memorials may be made to St. John’s Church, 252 South Dargan Street, Florence, SC 29506, The Church of the Ascension, PO Box 129, Rembert, SC 29128, or Trinity-Byrnes Collegiate School, 5001 Hoffmeyer Road, Darlington, SC 29532.
I am the resurrection and the life, saith the Lord;
he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live;
and whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.
I know that my Redeemer liveth,
and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth;
and though this body be destroyed, yet shall I see God;
whom I shall see for myself and mine eyes shall behold,
and not as a stranger.
For none of us liveth to himself,
and no man dieth to himself.
For if we live, we live unto the Lord;
and if we die, we die unto the Lord.
Whether we live, therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.
Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord;
even so saith the Spirit, for they rest from their labors.
Book of Common Prayer, The Burial of the Dead: Rite One