William Allen “Bill” Cooper, 86, passed away from cancer on Thursday, March 19, 2020 at his home in The Villages, FL surrounded by loving family and friends.
Bill, born May 17, 1933 in New Haven, CT, was the son of the late William & Roberta (Humphrey) Cooper Jr. (West Haven, CT). He leaves his son, Edward A. & wife Laura P. (Wolfeboro, NH), his daughter, Marcia C. & husband Joseph Adinolfi (Prospect, CT), his son, John W. & wife Christina M. (Lakeville, CT). He also leaves his sister, Margery A. & husband Curtis Brown (York, ME), his former wife Joan K. Cooper (Avon, CT), and brother-in-law Clifford C. & Jane Konitz (Wappingers Falls, NY). He will be greatly missed by his grandchildren, Jennifer R. & wife Lisa H. Cooper (Groton, MA), Daniel A. & wife Caitlin Cooper (Sheffield, MA), Kimberly E. Cooper & fiancée Allison Letourneau (Bethlehem, NH), Corey M. Cooper (Lakeville CT), Brady E. Cooper (Lakeville CT), Kathryn G. Adinolfi (Prospect, CT), 5 great grandchildren, and 4 nieces and nephews. He is predeceased by his sister, Barbara J. & husband Frank “Whitie” N. Bensen (West Haven, CT) and sister, Janice R. Cooper (Lewes, DE).
Bill was a 1951 graduate from West Haven High School, West Haven CT and 1952 Post Graduate of Berkshire School, Sheffield, MA, and earned a B.A. Degree in 1956 from Brown University and an M.A. Degree from Colby College in 1965. Bill played hockey for West Haven High and was voted the most outstanding player in the area in 1951, before going on to play for Berkshire School and Brown University where he lettered in hockey all four years. He began his career as a dedicated educator and coach in 1956 at Trinity-Pawling School. He served as math teacher and coached hockey, football, and baseball. In 1959 he moved his family to CT to work as an engineer for Southern New England Telephone. In 1962 he returned with his family to Trinity-Pawling serving as Chairman of the Mathematics Dept., Head of the Disciplinary Committee and coached Varsity Hockey, JV Baseball, JV Football and Intramural Tennis until his retirement in 1981.
As a result of his long-term and successful commitment to athletics, Trinity-Pawling inducted Bill into the Athletic Hall of Fame in 2003 with his 1979 hockey team, who notched a remarkable 18-1-1 record, and again in 2018 for his long tenure as an outstanding coach. In addition, Bill, along with several Pawling residents, established the Pawling Youth Hockey League for town residents, utilizing the rink at Trinity-Pawling School. After departing from T-P, he briefly worked as an Educational Consultant based in Avon, Ct. Concurrently, he agreed to lead the Wolfeboro Camp School. His career in Wolfeboro began as a teacher in 1966 at the former Hill School Camp, a boy’s summer ‘camp school’ located on Rust Pond.
In 1977, Bill became Head of School. He established an independently successful co-ed program for 6th-12th grade students until his retirement in 2005 when he became a Trustee. His son, Edward Cooper, succeeded him as the Head of School until his retirement in 2019. Bill, known as “Uncle Willie” to his family, was a loving husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend who loved tennis, golf, biking, sailing, swimming, travel, theater, and cheering on Boston Red Sox, Boston Bruins, and New England Patriots.
A memorial service for Bill will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the William A. Cooper Scholarship Fund, Wolfeboro Camp School, PO Box 390, 93 Camp School Road, Wolfeboro, NH 03894, (603) 569-3451, wolfeboro.org.