Return to Class of 1938

Vernon Cooley3/27/1999
Funeral services for Vernon Cooley, 78, of Knoxville, who died March 27, in Wichita
Falls, Texas, were held April 2, 1999, at the First United Methodist Church in Knoxville.

Burial with military honors was at Indiana Chapel Cemetery near Attica. The Rev.
Bob Ward officiated at the services.

Music was provided by Geoff Shultz, organist,
Marvin Kekkey, soloist, and Gary McCurdy, tuba. Pallbearers were Jim Bellamy, Tim
Deaver, Chuck Reeves, Frank Richards, Steve Rice, and Richard Cummings. Honorary
bearers were Clair Rankin, Lyle Andrews, Wayne Sutherland, Jack Hillyer, Roy Roland,
Bob Van Hal, and Jim Selland. Vernon was born August 6, 1920, in Knoxville, the
son of Floyd Evert and Martha Josephine Cooley. He graduated from Knoxville High
School in 1938.

He was united in marriage to Norma Jean Miller on March 9, 1943,
in Lancaster, Mo. He served in the U.S. Navy 63rd Seabee Battalion in the South
Pacific for 33 months during World War II. After the war, he was head of the carpenter
shop at the VA Hospital in Knoxville. He began his own construction business in
1947, and built many homes in Knoxville.

His largest project was the Community National
Bank, now the Brenton Bank. He enjoyed flying and owned a commercial pilots license.
He also enjoyed caravaning with his Wally Bynum Airstream friends, and playing the
tuba. He was a member of the Oskaloosa Municipal Band, Des Moines Community Band,
Iowa Military Veterans Band, Windjammers Unlimited, Wally Bynum International Airstream
Band, Rio Grande Valley Concert Band, and the Tip of Texas Concert and Dance Band.
He was a member of the Knoxville Methodist Church, and was a Mason for 50 years.

He belonged to the Oriental Lodge #61, and was a 50-year member of the Knoxville
Chapter #85 Order of the Eastern Star. He was also a member of the American Legion
and VFW in Knoxville. He was preceded in death by his parents; an infant son; and
a brother, James Howard.

He is survived by his wife; a son, Floyd of Berkeley, Calif.;
a brother, John of Arlington, Va.; three sisters, Marthabelle Pickart of Lakeland,
Fla., Catherine Compton of Key Largo, Fla., and Joanne Presley of Ames. Memorials
may be made to the Marion County Historical Society. Arrangements were made by Evans-McCleery
Funeral Home in Knoxville.