Wednesday, July 13, 2016
John Carrick Cooper (1886-1969) Part 6
Jack owned a Ford car in the early 1920s which he later traded in for a Packard. After the Depression, this gas guzler Packard was set on bricks. After the Second World War, he sold it for $200. His son, Bud, felt he could have made a better deal. Jack continued to be an active man walking daily from 221st St. to 212th St. (two miles) to catch the local bus to go wherever he needed to be. He walked daily to the end of his life.
In the early 1950s, Jack “retired” and started to collect Social Security. He loved to cook. I will share some of his beloved recipes in later posts. He and Honey enjoyed these years with their nine grandchildren who called them "Pop and Nana."
Bud, his eldest, lived not far to be able to care for his parents when needed. Bud also took care of his father-in-law who lived with his growing family.
Jack, an excellent communicator, continued to trade letters with his military son, who, traversed across the U. S. and world working in different duty stations.
His daughter, moved out to California.
Jack and Honey made flights to California, in 1953, and Texas, in 1955, to visit Stan. Jack with grandson, Gib, feed the pigeons at the California San Juan Capistrano Mission as seen below.
On the Texas trip, they brought a family heirloom with them to present their son. It is a petite point of the face of Christ, hand stitched by Jack’s great-grandfather, Samuel Cooper. See future post on this family heirloom.
Stan and family try to come home between duty stations to visit relatives. I can document through my family photos about 5 visits for me; my older brother was privileged with several more. I can only remember my middle childhood ages from 10 to 13 when I spent more time with them. Nana and I loved to play games. She taught me how to play the card game WAR along with others.
Bud’s family helped to celebrate Pop’s 80th birthday on 5 Nov 1966.
The Coopers celebrates Jack and Honey’s 50th Wedding Anniversary
with a family reunion on 27 Dec 1966.
Jack and Honey lost their adult son, Stan, my father, a month later. It broke both of their hearts, along with the rest of the family. I have a letter Pop typed for me as an encouragement to keep working to my best ability as it pleased all of those who cared about me. This was much needed during my teen years.
The family gets together for granddaughter Ellen’s wedding in the summer of 1967.
Jack died of a stroke on Tuesday, 15 July 1969. Services were at the local Stutzmann Funeral Home, on 17 July at 8 P.M. His funeral was Friday, 18 July at 10 A.M. He was buried at Evergreens Cemetery in Brooklyn with other family members. See future blog about Evergreens Cemetery. Honey died a few weeks after Jack.
Since I have few memories of my grandparents, I asked my cousins to share with me their memories of growing up with Nana and Pop.
“It seems like to me that we saw Nana and Pop every weekend. I remember driving there on the parkways and going through a small tunnel by Belmont Raceway and dad would blow the horn. I remember pop as being old, always with a smile, a beer, and a cigarette. He would always be making jokes and teasing Nana. Nana was such a kind, giving, and caring woman. I remember playing cards with her - Slap Jack and War. I was a sore loser so she would always let me win. I remember she would cook me ravioli in a can and I could never finish it. The first time I finished the whole can I was so happy and she was clapping and cheering. I remember always being happy when we either went to their house or they came to visit us.” Cousin Bill
“Nana was the most nonjudgmental person I have come across. My dad was the same way and he got this trait form Nana! Nana was a very kind person also. She was also a good listener. She read a lot to us children and the teacher in her was very evident. She helped me with my reading and spelling when I was visiting.
My memories of Pop were: he sat in the corner of the living room in his chair and smoked and drank his beer. He loved to cook. My mom still uses his stuffing recipe. His baked beans were out of this world! He was very intelligent and read a lot. I loved sitting at his roll top desk in his room. I use to pluck away at his Old Remington typewriter. Sometimes he would get mad when I was at his desk, but then he would just walk away. He always talked about your Dad - he was very proud of his Navy accomplishments. He was a sensitive man, and I have seen him shed a tear or two. Nana and Pop argued a lot, but they were very devoted to each other. Pop was very good to Aunt Margarite [his sister-in-law].
We visited Nana and Pop every Sunday growing up for dinner. Later on, my dad would drive to Queens Village to bring them out to Massapequa for the day.” Cousin Ellen
“I remember picking berries in their backyard and walking with Pop to the candy store down the street.” Cousin Debra
Thank you so much for these precious memories.