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Cooper, Raymond McLean

It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Judge Raymond McLean Cooper, on Thursday February 21, 2013 at Kootenay Lake Hospital, Nelson, B.C. Judge Cooper died peacefully in the company of his 5 children. Ray was predeceased by his parents, William and Hilda; sister Marion (Vigne); brother Ron; and sister Audrey (Green). He is survived by his loving wife of 60 years, Betty; his five children and their families, Debi Mycroft (Balfour) & son Vernon; Mac & Wife Beth (Vanderhoof) & daughters Kailey and Maraya; Kelly and Husband Bob (Vancouver) & sons Brian, Ian, and Jeremy; Allan and Wife Tomoko (Port Coquitlam) & sons Sean and Daniel; Alison Mayrhofer (Nelson) & daughters Eva and Rose; a large extended family, and many dear friends. Ray was born August 14, 1926, in Grand Forks, B.C., to William and Hilda Cooper. The Coopers moved to Creston when Ray was 3 years old. He completed Grade 13 at Prince Charles Secondary in 1945, then attended UBC and earned a law degree. Ray returned to Creston and began his law practice in March, before marrying his childhood sweetheart, Betty Skelly, in May of 1951. While in Creston, Ray was active in many clubs and organizations. He believed in service to the community, and belonged to the Lions Club, Rotary, the Creston Hospital Board, the Creston Board of Trade, and many other associations. Interested in politics, Ray acted for several years as President of the East Kootenay Liberal Association. Ray valued his many friends in Creston. In the summer of 1981, a phone call from then Attorney-General Jean Chretien announced his position as a Judge of the County Court of B.C. in Nelson. Ray left Creston to begin a second career on the bench in the spring of 1982. Judge Cooper initially held court in Nelson with additional itinerant court duties throughout the West Kootenays. In 1990, the County Court was merged with the BC Supreme Court, and his new duties required Ray to divided his court time between Nelson and Vancouver until his retirement in 1996. Ray and Betty had many happy moments together, whether wintering in Southern California or spending summers on Kootenay Lake with family and friends. Ray enjoyed boating, fishing, as well as hunting when he was younger. A founding member of the Creston Golf Club, Ray later brought his lifelong love of golf to Nelson where he discovered many new friends and golf partners at his favorite destination: the Balfour golf course! A memorial service will be held Saturday, March 23, 2013 at 1:00 pm at the Thompson Funeral Service Ltd. 613 Ward Street, Nelson, BC. Our grateful thanks to the staff at Kootenay Lake Hospital, Mountain Lakes, and Thompson Funeral Service Ltd. for your professional and compassionate care. As an expression of sympathy, family and friends may make donations in Ray’s memory to The Alzheimer Society of BC West Kootenays, 809 Davies Street, Nelson, BC V1L3T6

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