Stella Bessie Cope, 96 was born October 8, 1919, in Macomb, OK to Charlie and Stella (Burden) Clement. She married Elwood Cope August 15, 1938 in Tecumseh, OK. He preceded her in death on September 17, 1985. Also preceding her in death were her parents, 5 brothers, Lee, Churchill, Lelan, Bill, and Lester Clement; two sisters, Arie Scott and Ellen Cope; one grandchild, Karen Crow Degraffenreid.
Bessie graduated from Macomb High School in 1937. She was a charter member of the Macomb Alumni Association and served as secretary of the association for 47 years. She loved Macomb and generously donated her time, money, and talents with the school. She cooked in the school lunchroom for 9 years before leaving to take a job at Tinker Air Force Base in 1966. She retired from Tinker in 1986 after 20 years of service.
She was very proud to be asked to serve as a co-grand marshal for the Macomb Centennial Parade in 2003.
She was a member of Romulus Baptist Church and was baptized in 1952. In 2015, the Baptist General Convention presented her a certificate recognizing her as the oldest living member of Romulus Baptist Church on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the church. She served as Sunday school teacher, director of Vacation Bible School, youth training union class, cooked for the church youth at Falls Creek for many years, and was church clerk for 11 years.
She was a member of Tecumseh Chapter #30, Order of the Eastern Star and served as Worthy Matron of the Chapter 3 times, was a District Deputy 2 times, and was a Grand Representative to Saskatchewan in 1985-87 and to Utah in 2008-2010. She traveled to every General Grand Chapter Session from 1977 to 2009 and went to many Grand Chapter sessions.
She loved to travel and visited 39 of the 50 states. Some of her most memorable trips include an Alaskan Cruise, a trip to Hawaii, 3 trips to Washington DC, a trip to Mexico, 6 trips to Canada, and most recently, going to Kentucky and Ohio beginning in 2000 to visit her husband’s birthplace and visit with his many cousins there.
She loved to make quilts and over the years made close to 100 quilts, some of them she sold, some of them she gave away to be used as fund-raisers for the Alumni Association, the Eastern Star, or some other organization; but most of them she gave away to her children, grandchildren, friends, and other family.
Cooking was one of her favorite pastimes. She often volunteered to prepare and serve meals for school and church events, or make a pan of cinnamon rolls for the kids at school when she was a classroom granny.
In her 96 years she touched many lives and will be greatly missed in her community.
Surviving are 5 daughters and sons in law, Dorothy and Larry Crow of Tecumseh, Linda Kaye and Royce Lanier of Tishomingo, Myra and Charles Sweaney of Harjo, Vera and Rick Masters of Oklahoma City, and Cheryl and Mark Lipe of Arcadia; 3 sons and daughters in law, Jerry and
Marilyn Cope of Des Moines, Iowa, John & Carolyn Cope of Meeker, Pat and Melissa Cope of Macomb; 22 grandchildren; 31 great-grandchildren; 9 great-great-grandchildren; 1 sister, Annamae Hicks of Macomb; many cousins, nieces and nephews and a host of friends.
Visitation will begin 1:00 p.m. Monday, January 25, 2016 and will continue until service time. Family will gather to meet with friends 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, January 26, 2016. Service will be 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 27, 2016 at Cooper Funeral Home Chapel with Brother Mike Craig of Temple Baptist Church, Shawnee and Pastor Steven Masters officiating. Burial will follow at Prairie View Cemetery at Macomb under the direction of Cooper Funeral Home of Tecumseh.
Cooper’s Funeral Home