SERVICES FOR THE LATE HONORABLE CYRUS S. COOPER,
Honorable Cyrus Sobu-Sohn Cooper, Sr.
Grand Gedeh County, Liberia West Africa
1920 - 2009
Cyrus S. Cooper, Sr. passed on Saturday, October
24, 2009 at the age of Eighty-Nine (89).
Honorable Cyrus S. Cooper, Sr. was born to Sei-Sobu
and Nyon-Nio in Twan Won Town within the Tchien
Mangen Clan. He received his elementary education
from the Assemblies of God Mission School in
Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County.
His struggle to obtain an education exemplifies
the struggles of many other indigenous Liberians.
With practically no schools in the Eastern Providence,
now Grand Gedeh County, Honorable Cooper, like
many others Grand Gedeans, had to leave home,
first traveling to Cape Palmas, now Maryland
County to complete his elementary education,
and then to Monrovia to obtain his post elementary
Monrovia, he lived with a number of Americo-
Liberians as a "House-Boy" and adopted
their names in the process. He was known at
various times by such surnames as Wilson, Parkinson,
Cassell and, finally Cooper.
earned his high school diploma with honors from
the College of West Africa. Recipient of a full
academic scholarship, he earned a Bachelor of
Science degree from the University of Liberia
Honorable Cyrus S. Cooper, Sr. began his professional
career as a teacher and principal at the Tubman
Wilson Institute in Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County;
which he later transformed into a high school.
He then served as principal of D. W. Coleman
High School in Clay-Island, Montserrado County.
Even though he'd earned a place of distinction
in Monrovia, the Capitol City of Liberia, his
heart remained within the rural areas fueled
by a desire to help the people of his birthplace.
He understood intimately the necessity of addressing
educational issues as a means toward improved
living conditions in the countryside. Armed
with foresight, driven by compassion and possessed
of genuine concern, he obtained a transfer and
returned to serve in Zwedru.
1964, The Honorable Cyrus S. Cooper, Sr. received
a Masters of Science degree in Education and
Public Administration from the Emporia State
University in Kansas State, U.S.A. Again compassion
and foresight compelled him to use his newly
acquired training and skills to advance literacy
in rural Liberia. At his request, he was appointed
as the Assistant Supervisor of Schools within
the Eastern Region by the Ministry of Education.
Honorable Cyrus Cooper, Sr. also achieved notoriety
outside of academia. He became known as the
"Stepper"; making reference to a man
who knew how to dress, walk, and attract attention
with his style.
late President William R. Tolbert promoted him
to Supervisor of Schools within the Eastern
Region, a position he nobly served until 1980.
He was appointed Managing Director of the Grand
Gedeh County Development Project, Inc. by the
late President Samuel K. Doe. This appointment
provided an opportunity for fulfillment of a
long held vision. He graciously accepted the
responsibility for overseeing redevelopment
of the city of Zwedru. A son of the countryside
and always the educator, he became one of the
pioneers in the construction of the first public
library in Grand Gedeh county.
continued fulfillment of his dream to serve
Grand Gedeh County, The Honorable Cyrus Cooper,
Sr. was elected to the House of Representatives
of the Liberian Legislature in 1985. He was
selected as chair of the Executive Committee
of the House of Representative by his colleagues.
The 1989 armed insurrection prematurely ended
his political career. He sought exile in Minneapolis,
brother, husband and father, The Honorable Cyrus
S.Cooper leaves to mourn his beloved wife, Esther
Dorbor Cooper; his brother, Joe Dweh Cooper;
mother of five of his children, Frances Darlue
Gwion; his sons, Wilhelm W. Cooper, Cyrus S.
Cooper, II; his fourteen daughters, Lucretia
Cooper-Tonquist, Toosie Cooper, Julia Cooper-Grear,
Annie Cooper-Wilson, Dr. Eugenia Cooper-Merchant,
Ellen Cooper, Munah Cooper, Mona Cooper-Zeele,
Evelyn Cooper, Priscilla Cooper, Vesta Cooper-Kunneh,
Helen Cooper, Eve Woodson, and Evelyn Decontee
Cooper; forty grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren;
several nephews including E.Ganda Dweh, Shad
Dweh, Lawrence Dweh and Augusta Krah.
is preceded in death by two sisters: Mary Beiley-Johnson
and Nyenenyon Sobu; one brother, Teo Sobu; his
first wife, Priscilla Lambert Cooper; mother
of his first daughter, Ellen Vanpelt -Padmore;
mother of three of his children, Ma Sarah Kaynnyon,
mother of one of his children, Ma Gaye Zakpa,
and two sons, Cyrus Soko Cooper and Charles
This man of distinction and great honor will
be missed by his loving family, friends and
a host of admirers. May his soul rest in perfect
SERVICE: BETHEL WORLD OUTREACH CHURCH
3900 HUBBARD AVENUE N.
MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA 55422
TIME: 4:00 PM TO 8:00 PM