OLD MISSION PENINSULA — Ivan L. Cooper, 87, passed away on the morning of Tuesday, April 30, 2013, at his home surrounded by family.
Although a longtime Traverse City resident, Ivan was born in Newcastle under Lyme in the United Kingdom. The younger of two sons of the late John “Jack” and Ann Eliza (nee Walker) Cooper, Ivan grew up in the Midlands and attended Christchurch College, Oxford University, before going on to serve in the Royal Air Force as a navigator during World War II. After the war Ivan returned to his studies, this time the University of Liverpool, where he earned a degree in architecture and entered into what was to be a 64-year marriage with the love of his life, Peggy Reneta Murray Hinett. With Peggy, Ivan had three children, Susan, Ella and Olivia, all current residents of Traverse City.
Ivan was a brilliant and talented architect and it was his skill at this profession that earned him a Visa and permanent residency in the United States. In 1967 he joined Kramer, Hirsch and Carchidi, AIA, Architects, in Trenton, N.J., and soon parlayed the experience he had gained at Keele University in England into the design of, not one, but two award-winning colleges in New Jersey - Burlington County College and Gloucester County College. But Ivan did not restrict his talent merely to educational facilities. He leaves behind a body of work including schools, hospitals, postal facilities, even prisons.
After retiring from architecture, Ivan joined wife Peggy and helped establish and run P.C. Research Services, a small but important company which provided the data that has helped many of this Nation’s leading non-profit organizations to achieve their fundraising goals. He also served the Grand Traverse region for many years as a member of S.C.O.R.E., the Service Corps of Retired Executives, helping another generation to found businesses in the area.