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Colonel Irven Roland Cooper, Jr.


Colonel Irven “Buddie” Roland Cooper, Jr. DVM, passed away in San Antonio, Texas. Born in Uniontown on December 24, 1921, he was the son of Dr. Irven Roland Cooper, Sr. DVM and Mattiel McKnight- Cooper. Following in his father’s footsteps, Buddie graduated from Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. He also served in the United States Army, first as Senior in World War I, then Junior in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam—for a career spanning 33 years. During his service in World War II, Buddie was a food inspector on the Queen Mary when she arrived to New York.

Following World War II, Buddie married Helen Althea Weir on November 2, 1946. Following their marriage, the couple moved to Ridgeland, South Carolina, where Buddie started a private veterinary practice. It was here where Buddie would also obtain a private pilot certificate.

Buddie was an involved man: from coaching little league, leading Boy Scout and Explorer Troops, commanding the Windcrest American Legion, and assisting at the Fort Sam Houston Main Post Chapel services. He also would organize the Cooper family reunion in South Carolina every summer.

Col. Cooper is survived by: his wife, Helen; his sons, Lawrence Melvin, Fletcher (Zindi) McKnight; three grandchildren, Shelley (Andrew) Cooper-Kirkland, DVM, Matthew (Megan) McKnight Cooper, and Laura Ashley Cooper; three great-grandchildren, Lilly Kirklan, Owen Cooper, and Crosby Cooper; and many nieces and nephews.


He was preceded in death by: his parents, Dr. Irven Roland Cooper, Sr., and Mattiel McKnight Cooper; sisters, Mattiel Dorsey Cooper-Terry, Agnes Cooper-Hunt, and Mozelle Cooper-Oswald; and son, Irven Roland Cooper, III.

Funeral services were held at Sunset Funeral Home in San Antonio, Texas, Tuesday, December 21, 2022. Pastor James Taylor officiated, with members of the American Legion Post #593 serving as pallbearers.

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