Bountiful — As of Tuesday 23 October my cycle of life on this earth is now complete. Cancer scored some goals, but I won the shoot-out. I was named Richard Milton Cook (although I have never been fond of the Milton part. I don't know why my folks chose to name me that, except they wanted me to have the initials RMC, like my dad.) My father is Reginald M. Cook and my mother is Annis Barlow. I was born October 10, 1933 in Burley, ID.
My younger years were spent in South Davis County and Vernal, UT. Great memories of those days, playing with my cousins and working shoulder to shoulder with my uncles, who were great examples of hard work and honesty. I really liked going to school and have great memories of Stoker Elementary and Bountiful Jr. High.
We moved to San Francisco, CA at the start of my teenage years. I was blessed with great friends and we all grew up with great respect for our church, our country and our educations.
While serving in the US Army I discovered my great love of teaching, when I had the opportunity to be the Training Instructor for our unit. (The subject matter wasn't especially to my liking, but I faithfully taught from the manual).
I served in the Eastern States Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. At the time I thought it was the hardest mission in the church. My buddies were reaping all over the world and I was sowing, daily sowing. By the end, I did have some baptisms and one very faithful convert to the gospel of Jesus Christ, myself.
I earned my wife and my higher education at BYU. I have a BE in Economics and a Master's Degree in Education. They have both served me well throughout my life. I worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad in order to pay for my education. I taught in the Church Education System and the Davis County Public Schools in order to support and raise my family. I think of Viewmont High School as my home away from home. The faculty, staff and the students I served were an extension of my family. Whether in the halls or on the soccer field, I was rewarded each day by students who were eager to learn and who were devoted and ambitious to living their lives with Viking Pride. I loved every day and don't remember ever feeling that I must go to work. I am a lucky man.
I married Karon Cunningham on May 29, 1962 in the Salt Lake Temple. I was late to our wedding, but she waited for me anyway. We met at BYU. I will always be grateful that she was willing to listen to my friends and give me a chance. We now have seven wonderful children and 22 grandchildren. I love them so much. They give me great joy. We moved to Bountiful on the 4th of July 1969. Bountiful is our home. We built our house on land first deeded to Israel Barlow, my great grandfather.
I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Bountiful Ninth Ward is our ward family.
I have had many opportunities to serve and teach. Some of those opportunities took more time than others, but each has been rewarding and I was changed by each experience. Karon and I especially enjoyed the callings where we served together, like the Bountiful Temple and Legacy House.
I haven't done a lot of community service, unless you are willing to count two rounds of Handcart Days and supporting Karon and the Cub Scouts. I never was big on hobbies, hunting or travel. I am really a homebody. Most of my time was spent with my family, my Church, my friends and my Viewmont Vikings.
I have played every quarter and a few add on minutes, without a substitute. My old earth suit is all worn out, but I am just fine.
I was preceded in death by my mother, Annis Barlow Cook Gordon and my father, Reginald M Cook. I am survived by my wife, Karon Cunningham Cook, my children JuliAnn Cook, Michael (Tina) Cook, Sharilyn (Rick) Linn, John (Natalie) Cook, Carolee Cook, Melinda (Tyler) Jones, and Shalisa (Adam) Bingham. My legacy also includes 22 grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
I am grateful to all our loving friends, wonderful neighbors and incredible staff at the Jon M. Huntsman Cancer center.
Funeral services will be held at 12 noon, Monday, October 29, 2012 at the Bountiful 9th Ward, 585 East Center Street. A viewing will be held Sunday evening from 6 to 8 p.m. at Russon Brothers Bountiful Mortuary, 295 North Main and Monday morning 10:45 to 11:45 a.m. at the church prior to services. Interment-Bountiful City Cemetery. Online guest book at www.russonmortuary.com.