Sarah L. Cooper, 95, English, journalism teacher

July 24, 2002

Sarah L. Cooper, a retired educator who taught English and journalism at Eastern and Western high schools, died of heart failure Monday at Broadmead retirement community in Cockeysville. She was 95 and a resident of Mount Washington until 1990.

Born in Baltimore and raised in Windsor Hills, Sarah Levin was a niece of Henrietta Szold, the West Baltimore intellectual who founded Hadassah.

She was a 1924 graduate of Western High School and earned her bachelor's degree from Goucher College in 1928.

She began teaching English and journalism in the late 1920s at Eastern, and was adviser to The Eastern Banner, the school's student newspaper.

In 1937, she married Benjamin B. Cooper, founder of Cooper's Camera Mart. He died in 1991.

After a hiatus from teaching to raise her two children from 1943 to 1958, she resumed her career at Western High and was adviser to its student newspaper, The Town Crier. She retired in 1972.

"Every year she'd take students to the Columbia School of Journalism in New York, where she led a session on censorship," said her son, Andrew Cooper of Westport, Conn. "She was always opposed to censorship of any kind, and wouldn't allow it to interfere in any of her student-run papers, which always took top honors."

Mrs. Cooper enjoyed vigorous outdoor activity. She took up skiing when she was 60 and continued to enjoy the sport until she was 80, as a member of the Baltimore Ski Club. She was a member of the Maryland Mountain Club and liked taking long hikes.

She also enjoyed reading and playing Scrabble.

"She was in her 90s when she took a computer course and learned to play Scrabble on the computer, often beating the experts," said her daughter, Martha Cooper of New York.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. tomorrow at Sol Levinson & Bros., 8900 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville.

In addition to her two children, she is survived by a brother, M. Jastrow Levin of Baltimore, and two grandchildren.

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