On December 12, 1957 in Fayetteville, NC, a very special person was born - Paul Cooper, Jr. He was bright and loving and full of life, and a great joy to his parents and his grandparents. In school he was a quick and facile student, and he loved to make his classmates laugh. Paul was a natural-born entertainer and storyteller and he always made friends easily. He graduated from high school in Trinity, NC in 1975 and went on to join the AirForce. He was stationed in Tacoma, WA as a radar-tech specialist, at which he excelled. After several years he felt the need to return home and was honorably discharged from the AirForce.
Upon returning to NC, he decided to pursue an Associates Degree in graphic arts and commercial design at Guilford Technical Community College in High Point, NC. He was a talented illustrator and photographer, and drawing with pen and ink was his favorite method. Paul loved music and was self-taught on guitar and bass guitar. He loved rock and roll music and played bass guitar in several rock bands, performing throughout the area during the 1980’s. In the 1990’s he and his wife Susie had a home recording studio and Paul spent countless hours mixing and recording original tracks for the band known as Blue Renee. It was with great joy that he recorded a demo CD for the band, along with several other demos for other musicians.
Paul found his career in professional printing. He was one of the finest offset pressman in the region and worked for Hall Printing Co. in High Point, NC from 1985 - 2002. He worked closely with well-known artists such as Bob Timberlake, Ward Nichols and John Paul Strain. He was an artisan of his craft and reproduced limited edition fine art reproductions of their original paintings. Paul had an amazing ability for being able to see the most subtle color nuances in their works and the artists enjoyed working with him. It was a very rewarding career for him.
Paul and his wife Susie moved to Pilot Mountain, NC in 1992, seeking a more quiet life. When he retired from printing in 2002 due to health reasons, he occasionally assisted Susie in her shop, Blue Mountain Herbs, which is where most local folks got to know him and enjoy him.
Paul was a wonderful man. He was outgoing and generous, creative artistically and musically and a natural storyteller. He was so funny! He loved people, loved nature, loved his kitties and loved reading. He enjoyed talking and laughing and he could keep a healthy debate going on almost any topic! And he had an opinion on almost any topic! And when he told a story, we would hear every detail. People gravitated towards him easily.
He loved his family deeply and had a huge heart of compassion for those less fortunate. He cared about “the underdog,” as he would say. Paul was an optimist and had an amazing ability to look on the bright side of a situation, or to lighten the mood by making funny comments. In his last few years he found a special Spiritual home with the kind people of United Methodist Church in Sparta, NC. He and his mother joined the church and he loved the choir music and especially Pastor Bob Miller’s messages. He listened to every word.
Paul is survived by his loving wife of 30 years, Susie Firth-Cooper; his devoted and adoring mother, Gloria Loflin of Virginia; sister-in-law Kim McQueen of Forest City, NC; sister-in-law Jenny Firth Fisher and her husband Rick of Gallatin, TN; nephews, Drake and Erik Fisher of Gallatin, TN; uncle Lennard Johnson of Houston, TX; many cousins and friends who will remember him fondly.
Paul is preceded in death by his beloved brother Wayne Loflin; grandparents Henry and Agnes Gronsten; uncles Arthur, Raymond and Stanley Gronsten; father Paul Robert Cooper, Sr.; aunt Shirley Johnson; father-in-law William Penn Firth and mother-in-law Erika Firth; and brother-in-law Jim McQueen.
Fly free now, dear Paul -- free of pain and illness and struggles, free to see again with new eyes, free to walk and move again, free to remember who you are again .... and free to know how much we all love you.
A Celebration of Life Service will occur on Saturday March 10th at 1:00 pm. at United Methodist Church, 190 North Main St., Sparta, NC. The family will receive friends at Sparta United Methodist Church following the service.
Flowers may be sent to the church to be delivered the day of the Service.
The family also requests that optional donations may be sent to the kind caregivers of Alleghany Center/Genesis Healthcare, Sparta, NC for the many years of special care they provided for Paul. They are amazing and loving...... they are family to us and our Angels on Earth.
For more information contact: Cox-Needham Funeral Home, Pilot Mountain, NC