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Jonah Cooper

July 5, 1930 July 4, 2016
Jonah Cooper
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Obituary for Jonah Cooper

Remembering the Life & Legacy of
Our Beloved Father
Friday, July 8, 2016
at First African Baptist Church
901 Clifton Avenue
Darby Township, PA  
Viewing: 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Homegoing Services:  11:00 a.m. 
Interment will conclude at 
Mount Lawn Cemetery
Sharon Hill, PA  
Reverend Jonah Cooper departed this life July 4, 2016, just one day prior to his 86th birthday.
Born Jonas on July 5, 1930 in Battlesboro, NC to the late Norman and Olivia Cooper, he later changed his name to Jonah which was more favorable for him.
Jonah was one of seven siblings: Austin, Nathaniel, Joseph, George, Louise and Bessie, all of whom have preceded him in death.
He attended Phillips High School where at the young age of fifteen (15) was asked to be a school bus driver.  Although his age was not in accordance with driving regulations, Jonah’s character provided the confidence that he could handle the responsibility.  He was wise beyond his years, and more than capable of doing the job well.   His work ethic throughout his life has never been less than extraordinary.
Seated in the rear of the Phillips High school bus sat an attractive young lady who caught the eye of Jonah as he drove.  As the story goes, there were many girls who crowded around the driver begging for his attention however they were unable to block his view of  the lady-in-the rear.
On September 12, 1950 Jonah and the lady-in-the-rear, Henrietta Lee Louise Kirtz were joined together in holy matrimony.  To this union was born six daughters and five sons.
Shortly after marriage, Jonah and Hen, as she was affectionately called, relocated to Philadelphia where he was eventually employed by John B. Kelly Construction Company for a short time.  He left when the time keeper addressed him using profanity – This was unacceptable and Jonah left the job.  However, since Jonah was always a responsible husband and father he immediately pursued another place of employment and was hired at a Gas Station located at Broad and Jefferson before returning home that same evening.  While working at the gas station he inquired of a patron concerning work, and as God would have it, the man instructed him to be ready for work the very next morning where a new relationship began.  Jonah met Mr. Reed along with his son, Sherman who owned a thriving construction business.  Jonah worked for the Reeds until he was laid off, approximately seven years later, because they ran out of work.
But God had a greater plan for Jonah:  God told him to go window cleaning.  Recognizing the voice of God, Jonah made up business cards going door to door on the mainline.  In time he was hired to do the windows in a wealthy mainline community, and the rest is history.  The business took off and Jonah was able to hire others in need of work.
The Cooper children were always involved in music, and Jonah and Hen were proud parents, providing music lessons, and musical instruments.  Surely this helped in his answering the call to the ministry.   He was never without a musician.  He founded and pastored Yet Hope Baptist Church until his retirement.  While pastoring Jonah took courses and graduated from The Manna Bible Institute.
God blessed Dad to move his family into a brand new housing development in 1963 where he would continue to raise his five sons and six of his daughters.
Jonah was an excellent craftsman who used his God given talents and skills to make many home improvements to their residence including 2 decks, electrical work, a remodeled kitchen, and the list goes on.  He was our go- to- expert mechanic as well, checking all of our cars whenever we mentioned an issue.  Jonah was truly our “Super Man”.
Jonah was preceded in death by his wife of almost forty-five years, and two sons – Algeron aka Algie (Val) and Jimmy.
He leaves to cherish his memories and carry out his legacy his children: Evelyn Washington (Howard) Levora Miller (Jerome); R. Diane Gilbert (Art); Jonah Cooper, Jr. (Denise); Denise Cooper; Phyllis Mosley (Eric); Anita Mock (Gregg); Montee Cooper (Ramona); Bert Cooper; Keon Nelson (Tony); Twenty-Three grand children, 18 great grandchildren, five great great grands, and a host of family, neighbors and friends. 
A very special “Thank You” to Frances, Cynthia, and Tamika Davis
for their excellent care and unselfish sacrifice.
Sorrowfully Submitted,
The Family

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