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Charles E. Cooke

Obituary for Charles E. Cooke

February 3, 1954 - July 25, 2020
Cleveland, Ohio | Age 66

Devoted Father and Grandfather


CHARLES E. COOKE, age 66 of Cleveland. Devoted father of Teela Kovacs (Nick Baxter) and Erik Cooke (Jessica); loving grandfather of Gavin Cooke, Leelu Baxter and Cameron Cooke; cherished son of the late Rosanna Cooke (nee Cole); dear brother of Lon Cooke, Sandra Cooke and the following deceased: Gerald, Patricia and Harold; dearest uncle and friend of many. Passed away Saturday, July 25, 2020.

My Dad, Charles Cooke was 'Ed' to all that knew him. Writing about him from the perspective of his adult daughter would be an impossible feat to capture everything he meant to those who knew him. I know if he saw what I'm about to write he would roll his eyes, giving me a look over his glasses and say, 'Don't you think that's a little much?' But I'll never be able to say enough.

Hard-working is not a big enough word to describe his tireless effort to try to afford my brother and I a better childhood and life than he experienced growing up. He dedicated 30 plus years to Alcoa's aluminum plant, eventually becoming a respected foreman. But I still remember the early years of singed eyebrows and burns he came home with after working the forges. Extra shifts, overtime- yes. Answering a call at 3am to fix a press. All to provide for his family. Our Mom once told me that he would often talk in his sleep, explaining how a coworker should get a machine running again. Tough as nails- invincible in our eyes.

Precise and practical in his high expectations of my brother and I, higher education was never a question and additionally coupled with his endless aim that we developed not only the best we could in school but were people with common sense in this world. This was the Dad that when I had my first flat tire, taught me exactly where to place a jack and do it myself while holding an umbrella in the rain right there in the street. He just knew all of the things, how to fix all of the things and what to do in the rare occasion that he didn't. No easier on my little brother, he showed his love by teaching him how to be a good man. The image of my toddler brother up in the mirror gliding an empty razor through a face full of cream, 'shaving' right alongside his Daddy. To the support and pride he felt as my brother enlisted to serve our country in the Army.

He had deep lifelong friendships with so many who will mourn him, and through his charm was a fast friend to countless others. From fixing up the old Hondas of my childhood through that first Harley, my Dad was passionate about riding. His friends will have endless stories and memories of motorcycle trips around the country. Beyond his bike and racing trips for adventure he was there for every charity run that crossed his path.

Through his charismatic personality, sarcasm and quick wit, a stranger couldn't help but want to share a beer along with my Dad. When he wasn't traveling, his retirement years provided the time to slow down- just a little- and focus on two things: his gardens and his grandchildren. The patience and care in tending to his plants were found in the endless nurturing and love he showered on his grandchildren.

Through his eyes, Gavin, Leelu and Cameron could do no wrong. His little 'Chuckleheads' as he lovingly referred to them were the very light of his life. Still keeping them on the straight and narrow of course, there was nothing he would deny them, committed to being the proudest Papa. These are the words that are hardest to express, as our three children were what he was absolutely living for. Even while facing what he knew was his very end he was making one last epic plan to travel state parks and camping in the hope that he could give them one more memory of their devoted grandfather. Just one more. Fearing they would forget him, what everyone is struggling with was how quickly his health took away the only thing he really cared about: time. He wasn't finished and none of us were ready. Too soon, too fast and already missed.

Friends may call at the BUSCH FUNERAL HOME, 7501 RIDGE ROAD, PARMA FROM 3:00 PM-7:00 PM, THURSDAY, JULY 30 with social distancing. Cremation by Busch Crematory. 440-842-7800

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