Shirley E. Cooper, 71, presser, seamstress

July 07, 2004

Shirley E. Cooper, a retired cleaning establishment worker and active church member, died of heart failure June 30 at St. Agnes HealthCare. The Catonsville resident was 71.

Born Shirley E. Harris in Baltimore and raised in Catonsville, she was a 1950 graduate of the old Benjamin Banneker High School.

Mrs. Cooper was a presser and seamstress at Edmondson Cleaners in the Route 40 West Shopping Center from 1963 until her retirement in 1993.

"One of her special dishes was her potato salad. Everyone always wanted her to make potato salad," said her husband of 38 years, Gary Cooper Sr., who also worked at Edmondson Cleaners.

Mrs. Cooper was an evangelist and board member of the choir and missionary at Rehoboth Church of God on Poplar Grove Street, where services were held yesterday.

In addition to her husband, survivors include five sons, Gary Cooper Jr., Clarence Cooper and Eric Cooper, all of Baltimore, Myron Cooper of Troy, N.Y., and Steve Cooper of Miami; four daughters, Doreen Cooper and Tina Cooper, both of Baltimore, Shelly Cooper of Woodlawn and Mignon Ragin of Perry Hall; 19 grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren. Another son, Vernon Cooper, died in 1998.

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