Of Roseburg, Oregon, beloved wife, mother, grandmother and sister went to Heaven on Wednesday, January 9, 2013 at the age of 78 after a brave battle with cancer. She was born on March 1, 1934 to Creed and Vera Jane (Wilkins) Conn in Roseburg. The Conn family settled in the Melrose area in 1853 after fording the South Umpqua River in wagons. Gail was very proud that the bridges spanning from Garden Valley to Melrose were named the Conn-Ford Bridges for her family. Gail went to school at Melrose School and graduated from Roseburg High School in 1953. She worked at the candy counter for Woolworth’s on Jackson Street. Gail married Clyde Cooper on March 12, 1954 at the Lookingglass Church in an evening ceremony. When they discussed the date of the ceremony with the minister who was very hard of hearing, he thought she said they wanted to get married “tomorrow at 12” not realizing they were asking for March 12th. She loved to tell that story and everyone always laughed! Gail and Clyde bought land in Melrose and built their home. Melrose Road was gravel at the time and the only way to town was what is now called Old Melrose Road. They have two daughters, Clyda Jomae Houck and Lesa Gail McJunkin, who both live in the Roseburg area. When the girls were young, Gail was a stay-at-home mom and homemaker. In later years, she was employed by Joe Bando Mobile Homes and then for the Roseburg School District as a cook. After retiring, Gail and Clyde enjoyed camping at the coast and at Rock Creek Campground up the N. Umpqua. Gail loved to spend time with her family and friends, going camping, working in her yard, playing with and teaching tricks to their little dog, Digger. She loved to dance! She line danced, they belonged to the Buckaroo Square Dance Club and were members of the Moose Lodge for many years. She loved garage sales, going out to eat with friends and family, going to the movies, shopping trips and hot fudge sundaes. Gail had a beautiful smile and a kind and loving heart. Gail is survived by her loving husband of 58 years, Clyde; daughters, Clyda Houck and her husband Ed; Lesa McJunkin and her husband Al; grandson Tyler Houck and his wife Erica; step-grandchildren Erik and Brandy McJunkin; brother Norvel Conn and many relatives including cousins, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents Vera and Creed, sister Della Mae Conn, brothers Delmer, Keith and Wilmer Conn. Our family would like to thank the Community Cancer Center, Amedisys Hospice and Kimberly’s Loving Care for the love and kindness they gave our mother and our family. Funeral Services will be held at the Melrose Community Church on Saturday, January 19, 2013 at 11 a.m. Interment will be at the Melrose Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of Taylor’s Family Chapel.
Vera Gail Cooper (Conn)
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