Gerald Cooper Obituary, Death – He earned his diploma from Richland Center High School, where he also studied. Jerry served in the United States Army during the conflict in Korea. He was stationed in Korea from 1950 to 1953. After devoting himself to the service of his country in the armed forces, he went on to receive a degree in agriculture from the University of Wisconsin at Platteville in 1956. He then continued his education at the University of Wisconsin in Madison.
Jerry Riege and Fran Riege were united in marriage on July 27, 1957, at the Sherman Avenue Methodist Church in Madison, Wisconsin. The ceremony was also held on same day. After spending a number of years instructing students at Viola High School, he went on to pursue a career in the life insurance sector as an underwriter until the time of his retirement. A few of Jerry’s most cherished pastimes included being outside, tending to his garden, and working on his family’s farm.
Over the course of his life, he was a true arborist, and during that time, he planted more than 72,000 trees on the land owned by his family. Baseball, softball, volleyball, boxing, and card games, specifically euchre, pinochle, and sheepshead, were some of Jerry’s favorite sports and activities. Boxing was another sport that he enjoyed. Both Jerry and Fran were ardent supporters of getting more people trained in agriculture. As a result of their philanthropy, the Cooper Living and Learning Center on the UW-Platteville Farm was named after them.
Additionally, they funded annual scholarships at Richland Center High School, UW-Richland, and UW-Platteville. Both of these institutions are located in Wisconsin. 2005 was the year when Jerry and Fran both passed away. He valued the time he got to spend with his two grandchildren more than anything else in the world. Jerry and Fran were passionate explorers of the world, but whenever they got the opportunity, Jerry was most excited about the prospect of seeing the Rocky Mountains. He was a member of the Trinity United Methodist Church, where he served in various capacities for many years. Additionally, he was a member of the Kiwanis club and frequently offered his time to serve popcorn at events.