Marilyn Jean (Roell) Cooper, 93, passed away peacefully at home with family by her side, on Friday, August 12, 2022. She was born July 11, 1929 in Richmond to the late Ted and Leona (Grapperhaus) Roell. Marilyn was a devout Catholic and life-long member of St. Andrew Catholic Church (St. Elizabeth Seton Parish), where her uncle, Msgr. Francis Roell was a pastor for 46 years. She raised her 4 sons at St. Andrew’s, where they attended church and school, and lived in the parish neighborhood most of her adult life. Over the years, she was a member of St. Andrew’s Athletic Committee, and Finance Committee, and was a Collection Counter. She was also an auxiliary member of the YMI.
After graduating from Richmond HS in 1947, Marilyn worked at Natco where she met John W. Cooper, the love of her life. They were married on April 30, 1949. She was a stay-at-home mom while her children were in school, but re-entered the workforce later in life. She worked as a teacher’s aide in Richmond Community Schools and was an executive secretary at Litton Gardner.
Marilyn was like a second mom to many children in the St. Andrew’s neighborhood. As her sons grew up through grade school and high school, the Cooper kitchen became a gathering spot for their friends. ”Mama Coop” as she was affectionately known, always had a kind word and a snack for the many kids who would stop by after school to see her sons. She had a soft spot in her heart for those who needed help. Over the years, she offered her friendship and assistance to those “least ones” we read about in the Bible. Whether it was hiring someone in need to do “odd jobs” around her home, making a sandwich for a hungry soul, or helping a newly-arrived, non-English speaking family get settled in Richmond, she always had the welcome mat out.
She is survived by her sons, J. David Cooper of Whitewater, IN, Tony Cooper (Mary) of Indianapolis, Jeff Cooper of Richmond, and Mark Cooper (Cindy) of Holden, MA, daughter-in-law Becky Thompson of Richmond, and Debbie Rudd of Richmond, grandsons, Gregory Cooper (Megan), Andrew Cooper, and Alexander Cooper, granddaughters, Christina Cooper and Meghan Cooper (Alaska) and great-grandson, Nolan Cooper. She was preceded in death by her husband of 45 years, John W. Cooper; sisters, Lois Krouse and Geraldine Peirce, and brothers, Ted Roell and Ed Roell.
Family and friends will gather on Friday, August 19, 2022, from 4:00-7:00 pm at Stegall-Berheide-Orr Funeral Home, 222 N. 10th St., Richmond, IN. At 7:00 pm there will be a rosary followed by a time to share memories of Marilyn. On Saturday, August 20 there will be one hour of visitation at the funeral home, beginning at 9:30 am. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00 am at St. Elizabeth Seton Parish, St. Andrew Chapel at 235 S. 5th St, Richmond, with Fr. Sengole Gnanaraj, officiating. Burial will follow in St. Andrew’s Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish. To share online condolences via the guest book or order flowers, please visit www.stegallberheideorr.com.