WESTBROOK, Minnesota (STPNS) --

  A Celebration of Life and Remembrance for James Richard Cooley was held Saturday, May 20, 2017 at the Westbrook Funeral Home.  Burial will be in the Westbrook Cemetery.  Online condolences may be sent at www.stephensfuneralservice.


    James “Jim” R. Cooley age 72 of Westbrook passed away Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at Slayton Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center.

    James Richard Cooley was born June 25, 1944 in Fulda, Minnesota to Richard and Viola (Olson) Cooley.  He was baptized July 2, 1944 at Fulda Presbyterian Church.  Jim graduated from Westbrook High School in 1962.  After his schooling, Jim entered the US Marines on March 12, 1962.  He received his honorable discharge March 8, 1966.  Jim was attached to the 3/9 Marines as a radioman and was the first to amphibiously land in Vietnam in Da Nang.  They were met with accolades from the Vietnamese and with gifts and flowers.  Jim was proud to be a Marine.  On November 19, 1966 he married Charlotte Hudson at Tracy Lutheran Church.  The couple lived in Westbrook.  Jim owned Jim’s Milling and later worked for Riddell Construction and Westbrook Egg Company.  In 1972 they bought and moved to a farm in Rosehill Township.  In 2011 he entered the Westbrook Nursing Home and in 2012 became a resident of Slayton Rehabilitation Healthcare Center.  Jim was a member of the VFW.  He enjoyed tinkering in his shop or with his John Deere tractors, listening to music, going to Slayton with his sons and looking at tools and visiting.  Jim loved his many pets, especially Harley, bonfires, and spending time with his family.  Our dad has fought valiantly against his dementia for 12 years and now he is finally at peace.  We will, in all our lifetimes, never meet a man so steadfast, courageous, and loving as Jim.  He will forever reign in our hearts and the hearts of everyone who had the privilege to know him. 

    Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Charlotte; children: Chad (LuAnn) of Rosehill Township, Brian (Kerstin) of Windom, Susan (Jason) Madson of Waseca, and Barb Cooley (fiancé Brian Froegel) of Trempealeau, WI; grandchildren: Yalanda Klein, Andrea, Quentin, and Brennon Cooley, Sara and Mitchell Cooley, and Josie Madson; great grandchildren: Paige, Kellie, Preston, Bentley, and Austyn; siblings: Betty (Dave) Johnson of Sanborn and John (Charlene) Cooley of Westbrook; and many other relatives and friends. 

    Preceding him in death were his parents, sister Norma Sell, brother Lee Cooley, and infant grandson Aaron Lee Cooley.