Cook, Charles Edward; “Chuck” (August 14, 1935 – December 1, 2018)
Charles E. Cook, known to family and friends as “Chuck,” passed away on December 1, 2018, at the age of 83 years.
Chuck was born in Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin on August 14th, 1935, a son of Pearl Zora Farmer and Charles William Cook. He grew up in a small farming community of Oakfield, WI with nine siblings and learned to be independent and hard working at an early age. He chose to attend a high school in Fond Du Lac, WI for its higher academic rigor which necessitated that he hitchhike each day to get to and from school. Chuck worked while attending University of Wisconsin – Madison to put himself through school and received a degree in Dairy Husbandry. During college, he ran out of money and left school to join the Army from 1956-1959. He returned to college and completed his degree, graduating in 1962. Shortly after graduation, Chuck began his 30 year career with American Breeders Service in DeForest, WI.
Chuck met the love of his life, Patricia Ann Cleasby, in 1954, and they were married on June 9th, 1956. Soon after, they began their family. When ABS opened a new branch of the company in Colorado, Chuck and Pat moved to Wellington, CO where he became the Unit Coordinator until his retirement in 1992. Chuck and Pat moved to Rifle, Colorado following his retirement and made their home there.
In 2010, Chuck was nominated for the Garfield County Senior Humanitarian Award. Throughout his life, he exemplified that ideal. In the Army, he qualified as an expert sharp shooter but chose to train as a medic. He was a Boy Scout leader. He was an EMT for the Wellington Fire Department. Chuck led a Christian life and attended church wherever he resided. In later years, he served on various boards and supported the elderly population and facilities in his church and community.
When retirement grew tedious, he worked at McDonalds as a maintenance man and made good friends with everyone he met. He also drove the senior support van, The Traveler, and gained a reputation of being a spark and twinkle in the lives of the people he served.
He is survived by his wife of 62 years, sons Thomas (Jan) of Bruneau, ID and Charles A. of Rifle, and his three daughters, Amy (Peter) Conrad of Denver, Mary (James) Wheeler of Rifle, and Judith (Michael) Drake of Grand Junction. Eleven grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren survive him. One grandson, Steven Cook, predeceased him.
A Celebration of Chuck’s life will be held at 11 am on Saturday, January 12, 2019 at the Rifle United Methodist Presbyterian Church in Rifle, Colorado. This informal gathering will highlight Chuck’s humor, his interest in nature, and his love of family and friends.
“Well done, good and faithful servant!” Matthew 25:23
Memorial donations in memory of Chuck can be made to the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR.ORG).