David Neil Cooper, 76, of Bucyrus died late Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017 at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus from complications after a recent fall.
He was born Nov. 11, 1941 in Bucyrus to the late Marvin and Bertha (Heckert) Cooper. He went to Holmes-Liberty High School where he participated in FFA and, with his brother, displayed entrepreneurial spirit by selling gum, candy and even fireworks. After graduation in 1959, he earned his Associate’s Degree in Accounting at Tiffin University.
He married his high school sweetheart, Miriam Kalb on Oct. 15, 1961 and the two became partners in faith, life, and business for 55 years until her death five months ago on July 11.
David and Miriam began selling produce and apple butter from a picnic table in their front yard in 1969 and then opened Cooper’s Country Market in 1970. In 1989 the market was moved into Bucyrus and renamed Cooper's Mill.
Their work allowed them to travel extensively attending Roadside Marketing Association conferences, which he served as president, craft shows, and trade shows where David loved reconnecting and sharing stories with dear friends.
David was a member of the Chatfield Evangelical Pietist Church where he served as an elder, councilman, and Sunday School teacher. He was also active in Farm Council, Farm Bureau, The Gideons, and enjoyed displaying his craft of apple butter preparation at Old-Time Days and other festivals.
He supported many worthy causes as he was able and His countless stories of adventures in life, business, and family history were heard by many. A true foodie, David loved to cook, taste and share recipes. His family looked forward to gathering for the annual birthday meal as well as other get togethers. His presence was certainly felt and will be missed.
David is survived by six children, Mary Ann Cooper, Sharon (Mike) Sparks, Carolyn (Rick) Greter, Dawn Cooper (Minerva Daniels), Sarah Johnson, and Daniel (Michelle) Cooper; 11 grandchildren, Caitlyn, Amanda, Nathan, Andrea, Andrew, Michael, Clayton, Gabriel, Anna, Emmaline, and Maverick; brothers, Charles (Sylvia) Cooper, John (Linda) Cooper, and James (Irene) Cooper; along with nieces, nephews, and cousins.
The Cooper family will receive friends on Friday, Dec. 22 from 1 to 3 and 5 to 7 p.m. at Wise Funeral Service in Bucyrus. His funeral will be on Saturday at 10 am at the Chatfield Evangelical Pietist Church, 3535 Chatfield Center Rd with Pastor Larry Bertsch officiating and burial will follow in Lust Cemetery, south of Chatfield.
Donations may be made payable to the Evangelical Pietist Church or The Gideons and given through the funeral home. Memories and photos can be shared on David’s tribute page at www.wisefuneral.com.