Ramon H. Cooper, 84, of Charles Street, Sharpsville, passed away following a lengthy illness, at 11:45 p.m. Tuesday, July 25, 2017, in UPMC Horizon, Farrell.
He was born in Olean, N.Y., on July 12, 1933, to Raymond Martin and Eloise Lila (Woodward) Cooper.
He was a 1951 graduate of Sandy High School in DuBois, and served in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean conflict.
He returned from war to assume the family business from his father, which he ran as Ray Cooper Roofing & Steeplejack, for most of his career. With roofing and painting as his base for business, he was known for his specialty "steeplejack work," in which he refurbished and renovated churches all over the area. He also worked a few years for McDivett & Street Contractors in Daytona Beach, Fla., where he was supervisor of a construction crew that built high rises. Lastly, he worked with his stepson, to whom he passed the business and steeplejack trade. They worked together on the east coast of Virginia, and all over northwest Pennsylvania.
He was a life member of Reynolds Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7599, a member of the Greenville Italian Home Club, and a former member of Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks Lodge 145 and Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie 805, both Greenville.
Ray will mostly be remembered for his contribution to sports under his business name Ray Cooper Roofing (RCR). In addition to being a good athlete, he was also a sponsor and consummate supporter of all sports and all age groups - Little League baseball, midget football, basketball (both men and women), girls volleyball, bowling, and the first semi-pro hockey team in Mercer County.
But his favorite sport was softball, a sport in which he was responsible for bringing some of the greatest competition and talent to the Greenville area. Some of the teams he put together were legendary, and won several state titles in the men's division during the late '60s and early '70s.
Ray will be remembered as the original "IRON MAN," who was truly one of a kind, with a work ethic that was a generation of its own kind.
Ray was a man with many hats, and even more stories, which he would gladly share with you over a "Bud" or two, a man who shared his generosity wherever he went, no matter who you are. From the job site, to the ballfield, to the golf course, and to his friends and family, he gave everything he had to this world, and he left it the same way he came in. But not without blessing us with the greatest memories of a truly great man, that we will hold dearly in our hearts and minds forever. He will be sadly and truly missed.
He is survived by: his former wife and current companion of 28 years, Barbara Fuoco, at home; two sons, Ramon S. Cooper and his wife, Michele, of DuBois, and Rick Cooper and his wife, Penny, of Brockway; a stepson, Joseph Fuoco and his wife, Melissa, of Greenville; two stepdaughters, Kimberly Fuoco-Conti and her husband, Gary, of Sharpsville, and Michele Bradac and her husband, Patrick, of Hermitage; 16 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; his first wife, Barbara Bradac and her husband, Paul, of Brockway; three sisters, Nancy Morgan of Maryland, Joan Cooper of Florida, and Sandra Yarbough of Maryland; and a brother, Merritt Cooper of DuBois.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, Gary Cooper, and a sister, Phyllis Hearns.
Memorial contributions can be made to Reynolds Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7599, 115 Edgewood Drive, Greenville, PA 16125.
Ramon H., 84, Charles Street, Sharpsville.
A memorial service will be held at a later date. Messages of sympathy, stories, and photos can be shared at: www.osborne-williams.com.
Arrangements by OSBORNE-WILLIAMS FUNERAL HOME and CREMATION SERVICES Inc., 73-75 Columbia Ave., Greenville, PA 16125
Published on July 26, 2017