Curtis Calvin Cooper Jr., known to family and friends as Bud, died at his home in Scottsdale on Monday, April 21, after a long illness. Bud was 93.
He led an active life and had many interests. He was an accomplished artist, horseman, rancher, cattleman, fisherman, hunter, trap shooter and a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather.
A graduate of UCLA with a degree in history, he also attended Dartmouth College. He moved to Arizona with his parents in 1929. He later worked for Goodyear Aerospace, and was for eight years vice-president of agricultural loans for Valley National Bank of Phoenix.
In that capacity, he became an accomplished pilot, flying his own plane throughout much of Arizona to inspect prospective agricultural loans for the bank. He gave up flying in 1980.
He was the son of the late C.C. Cooper Sr., a retired president of General Motors Acceptance Corp., and the late Nellie Louise Hardy Cooper. They lived in Bronxville, NY, before moving to Phoenix. Bud Cooper was born on Staten Island, NY, on Nov. 7, 1914.
Following Bud Cooper’s career with Valley National Bank, he was an active rancher and farmer. He operated a cattle ranch for many years, the Cooper Mountain Ranch, outside Williams, AZ. Other ranching or farming operations were conducted at various times at the family-owned El Coronado Ranch in Douglas, AZ; Sahuarita Farm in Sahuarita, AZ; and River Road Farms in Phoenix.
Bud was active in numerous Phoenix and Arizona organizations. He was a member of the Phoenix Art Museum, Arizona Cattle Growers Assn., the Orme AZ School Board of Trustees, Paradise Valley Country Club, the Arizona Club, and the Phoenix Country Club. Beginning in 1951, he was a longtime and active member in Rancheros Vistadores.
In 1964, he served on the Presidential Committee for Southwest Water Resources. He was also president of the Arizona Water Resource Commission, was a trustee of the Scottsdale Center for the Arts and was a director of the Beatitudes Campus of Care. He was a member of the United Church of Christ-Beatitudes of Phoenix.
He is survived by his wife of 36 years, Dorothy M. Cooper, a well-known artist who paints under the name Dorothy Fratt.
Other survivors include his two sons, both of Phoenix, Patrick H. Cooper Sr. and Curtis C. Cooper III, a daughter, Carolyn Cooper Collins of San Anselmo, CA; three stepsons, Peter Fratt of Phoenix and his wife, Margaret Ann Fratt; Father Greg Fratt of Morgan City, LA, and Nicholas Fratt of Los Angeles, CA, and six grandchildren, Leslie Collins Cook, husband, Alex Cook, Patrick H. Cooper Jr., Molly F. Cooper, Anne C. Cooper, Caycee C. Cooper, and Garrett W. Cooper along with several Great-Grand and Step-Grandchildren.
A Celebration of Life will be held in Williams, Arizona at the family ranch in the late summer.
Private services for family and friends will be held on April 29, 2008 at 2:00 p.m. at Whitney & Murphy Funeral Home, 4800 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, Arizona.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial donations may be made to Malpai Borderlands Group, P.O. Drawer 3536, Douglas, Arizona, 85608.