Craig Cooper

Obituary of Craig C. Cooper

Craig C. Cooper, Ph.D., D.O. passed from this earth on Wednesday, August 11, 2021 in Rotonda West, Florida. He had fought against pancreatic cancer for two and a half years and while his will remained strong, his body just could take no more. Craig was born in Hartley, Iowa on October 30, 1943 and was raised on the family farm where he learned the value of hard work and responsibility. In 1965, he went from Hartley to lowa State University in Ames, Iowa graduating with a degree in Animal Sciences. After graduation there, he went to the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin where he achieved his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Muscle Biology in 1970. A variety of circumstances took him to a ranch west of Ada, Oklahoma where he spent many years breeding and raising pure bred championship cattle. In 1982, he took a leap of faith and at the age of 38 fulfilled his lifelong wish to attend medical school. He attended the Oklahoma State University School of Osteopathic Medicine and Surgery in Tulsa, Oklahoma, graduating in June, 1987. After having met Toni Baulch of Ada just prior to leaving for medical school in 1982, in August of 1987 they were married in Ada. The first two years of their married life were spent in Salina, Kansas while Craig finished the last two years of his medical residency through the University of Kansas. After completing his medical studies in 1989, Craig and Toni moved to Springdale, Arkansas where he practiced family medicine for 26 years. In 2019, following his diagnosis and wanting to move south, a move was made to Florida where Toni's brother had relocated from Oklahoma. Craig was preceded in death by his father Clinton and his mother Sarah as well as his oldest sister, Claudette Hourigan. He is survived by his loving wife of 34 years: Toni; older brother: Charles Cooper and his cherished older sister: Connie Riedemann. Also surviving Craig are five nieces and two nephews who were of great support in his last months. He also had six great nephews and one great niece and enjoyed talking with them and at times counseling them on future life choices. A spiritual soul, he very much believed in Divine Intervention and experienced it vividly in his own life. One thing he wanted his friends and family to know during his illness was that "smiles and laughter were welcome". Phone calls and correspondence from family, friends and professional friends were so very much appreciated and many times brought those "smiles and laughter" to his life. Ever the physician, Craig had expressed his desire that any memorial service be delayed until it is safer to travel and to congregate in Northwest Arkansas. When planned, a notice will be placed in this section of the news in order for those who wish and feel safe to attend. Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of your choice in memory of Dr. Craig Cooper. Englewood Community Funeral Home with Private Crematory has been selected to handle arrangements. You may share a memory with the family at www.englewoodfh.com
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