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Donald A. Cooper

February 3, 1936 ~ May 18, 2019 (age 83)

Donald A. Cooper, 83, of South Hadley passed away at home on Saturday, May 18, 2019. He was born in 1936 to Austin and Stella (Langlois) Cooper. After graduating from South Hadley High School in 1953, he attended the School for Fine Turf Management at the University of Massachusetts and spent several years as greens-keeper at the Holyoke Country Club. He joined Friendly Ice Cream Corporation in 1969 as Landscaping Supervisor and later as Director of Construction. He designed landscapes and oversaw construction for many of the Friendly restaurants before departing in 1990, including the design and construction of the Friendly Ice Cream shrubbery sign along the Mass Turnpike in Wilbraham in 1969, a landmark that still stands welcoming you home. In 1990, he turned a hobby into a photography career, specializing in national restaurant chains, including Friendly’s, McDonald’s, Dunkin Donuts and Perkins Family locations from New England to Florida and Idaho. However, his greatest passion was extensive wildlife and bird photography, primarily in the Connecticut River Valley, and with his fellow photographers did several public shows displaying their work, including the return to Holyoke of the threatened species, Peregrine Falcons and the first nesting of Bald Eagles in over a century. He married Patricia (Brosseau) Cooper in 1962, spending over 50 years together until her passing in 2015. He leaves cousins: the Williamsons in Norwood, MA, the Larcoms in Casper, WY, the Camberlins in Montclair, Virginia, his Godchild Patricia Ouellette of Holyoke, best friend Ed Brousseau of South Hadley and longtime friend, caregiver and resident angel, Martha Mitchell.  There are no calling hours. The committal service will be on Thursday, June 6, 2019, at 12:00 PM., Saint Jerome Cemetery, 1666 Northampton St., Holyoke, MA. Barry J. Farrell Funeral Home is in charge. Memorial contributions may be made to Shriners Hospital or the Holyoke Heritage Park Merry-Go-Round.

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