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Jimmie's Story

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JIMMIE CHARLES COOK Bend, Oregon - The man. The myth. The legend. Known to many as The Godfather, to his children as Daddy, and to his grandchildren as Papaw. He was born in Texarkana on April 19, 1946, and met and married our Mama, Paula Kay Russell, on April 17, 1966. Daddy died on Thursday, December 14, 2017, and we are certain Paula Kay was standing there with that wild smile saying well, it took you long enough!

Daddy lived a life that most people see in movies or read about in books. He and his uncle Ronnie Stedman, who passed away in June this year, grew up tearing up the town, driving fast, and acting crazy. Both served in the military. Daddy was in the Army and served in Vietnam. He worked as a communications officer sending and receiving highly classified messages during the war.

He came home from the war and worked hard to provide for our family. He worked at Safeway for many years. He later formed his own business doing everything from bail bonds, to Jetco Wrecker Service, to brokering some significant transactions that became the basis of stories he would tell for years to come. He later worked for Verity Group until he retired several years ago.

After Mama died, Daddy finally made a trip to see his brother John and sister Judy in Bend, Oregon. We didnt know until about two years ago that living in Bend was a dream. That dream came true January 2, 2017 when we took the ultimate road trip driving in more snow than was safe because Daddy couldnt wait to get there. He was finally forced to the backseat for driving too fast. Daddy and Uncle Johnny shared a house, the recent passing of their sister, and too many adventures to count which included helicopters, dune buggies, house concerts, and the quest for the ultimate Vodka Collins … not necessarily in that order.

Daddy loved family parties, going to Galveston, eating Milk Duds, drinking Coors Light, eating TexMex, listening to Caseys TSA stories, a good Lemonade, and popsicles. He was the master of Spider Solitaire. He watched every possible episode of Criminal Minds and Blue Bloods. He could quote every Al Pacino movie ever made. And he loved his dog, Spartacus, an awesomely huge and silly bulldog who he called Big Boy.

Daddy was our hero. He taught us to seek justice, give freely, work hard, do our best, and to have fun in everything. He was a math genius, an amazing grandfather, a horse race whisperer, and a Cowboys fan. We could have been saying grace over Thanksgiving and he would have one eye open watching the Cowboys … and dont even think about turning the TV down or off.

Daddy passed away doing what he loved … being sneaky. He made plans to sneak home for Danis college graduation, and instead he graduated to Angel status. He hated for people to fuss over him. So its only fitting that he left us quietly and quickly … no time for drama or long goodbyes.

We just celebrated a huge Thanksgiving, the best any of us could remember. Family and friends from old to new were there. For each and every one of you, we are thankful.

Daddy made everything special. There was no problem he couldnt solve. No assistance he couldnt provide. He gave away everything he had to anyone who needed it, whether he knew them or not … even in death. Because of Daddys sweet generosity, he gave the gift of sight through his corneas, and the gift of healing to others through tissue and bone grafts. He always said, you cant take it with you.

A party will be held in his honor in January. TexMex and Vodka Collins will be featured. Music will be played and old stories will be told … some not appropriate for all ages. Details will be published to family and friends. Feel free to stop in and reminisce … stories are what makes legends, and Daddy was certainly a legend to us.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to the Dallas American Heart Association.
https://donatenow.heart.org/
Published on December 19, 2017
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