Harold (Hal) Gene Cooper, 74, died June 2, 2009, at his home surrounded by his loving family.
Mr. Cooper was born Sept 7, 1934, in Johnson City, NY, to Joseph and Elizabeth Cooper.
The family moved to Phoenix in the summer of 1944 seeking the warmth of the Arizona sun. He was a member of the first graduating class at West High in Phoenix. He graduated From Arizona State University in 1957 and later served in United States Air Force as a member of the Air National Guard. Hal never left Phoenix and is best known as the owner and President of Arizona Health Foods, Inc, a popular chain of natural foods stores.
He was a member of the Catholic Church and was an accomplished artist that loved to create.
Whether building a simple garden box, painting a water color or the design of a new retail concept, he loved to use his hands. This is evident through out his life. Growing up in Arizona, Hal took summer jobs working ranches from southern Colorado to Maricopa. These summer internships lead to a degree in Agronomy. His dream was to own his own ranch. However, as life has its many turn’s, Hal stumbled into the business world opening Hal’s Records and Hal’s Records of Scottsdale. It was in his store on 5th avenue in Scottsdale that he met the love of his life, Pam. Together they decided to raise a family and the stores were sold. They spent 45 wonderful years together. Hal’s career then became sales and marketing, from RCA Records where he launched many hits during the early sixties to Hallmark Greeting Cards to Radiance Vitamins, Hal was always a leader. Later in life, when most settle down, Hal and Pam decided to grow a chain of natural foods stores. From it’s origins on 19th avenue in Phoenix, Arizona Health Foods became a strong regional chain that boasted 14 stores and over 100 employees with locations throughout Arizona. Seeking retirement, in the summer of 2003 Hal and his family sold the chain. He loved sharing life stories with everyone he met. A family friend said it best this way, “I will always remember Hal as a consummate gentleman. Always with a smile and a friendly word. He had the undeniable knack of making each and every individual he was speaking with feel that they were probably the most interesting person he'd ever met”.
He will be missed greatly by his family and everyone who knew him.
Mr. Cooper is survived by his daughter, Cynthia Cooper, Son, Greg Cooper, Daughter-in-law, Holly Cooper; four Grandchildren Jonathan, Kayla, Austin and Annie, brother Ed Cooper, sister Joan Quill and sister in law Cathy Hurst.
He was preceded in life by his loving wife Pam.