Mr. William E. Cooper of Amsterdam, passed away peacefully Friday, March 1, 2013, at St. Mary's Hospital in Amsterdam. Bill was born in Amsterdam, N.Y. on September 5, 1922, the son of the late Ewart and Beatrice Finlay Cooper. He was a graduate of the Wilbur H. Lynch High School.
Bill served as a first lieutenant with the Army Air Forces Airborne Troop Carrier Group 47. He is a veteran of WW II. He participated in the Normandy invasion through the flying of resupply missions to Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge. He was awarded the Air Medal and the WW II Victory Medal.
After the war, he entered Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute and graduated with a degree in architecture. He served as an assistant architect with the New York State Department of Architecture for four years. He then returned to Amsterdam as a construction manager for J.L. Finlay Construction. In 1956 he started his own architectural practice. One of the earliest projects was the former Amsterdam Savings and Loan Building on Upper Church Street. Successive projects included the Clara S. Bacon Elementary School, Montgomery County Office Building, Montgomery County Infirmary, Gloversville City Hall and Fire Station, Liberty Enterprises and the Florida Town Office Building. Bill was elected president of the Eastern New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects from 1988-1989.
Bill enjoyed sailing on the Sacandaga Lake, playing tennis and horseback riding with friends and photography. His true passion was flying airplanes, starting at the age of 65.
Bill is survived by: his wife, Joan Pulling Cooper, whom he wed on January 20, 1945; a son, David Cooper; daughters, Patricia Cooper and Jill Cooper Morris and her husband, Daniel Morris; a granddaughter, Daria Morris; grandson, Chad Fagan and his wife, Traci; a great-granddaughter, Tenley Fagan. He is also survived by his brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Norene Cooper.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, March 8, 2013, at 11 a.m. at the United Presbyterian Church, Church Street, Amsterdam, with the Rev. James McLeod Jr. officiating. Burial of Bill's cremated remains will take place at a later date at the Gerald B.H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery with military honors. The family will receive family and friends on Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Betz, Rossi & Bellinger Family Funeral Home, 171 Guy Park Avenue, Amsterdam, N.Y. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Bill's memory to an animal shelter of one's choice. Please sign the family guest book on line at www.brbsfuneral.com.