Robert H. Cooley, 75, Noblesville, died Oct. 22 at home after a long struggle with cancer.
Cooley was born July 25, 1941 in Arlington, Ind., to parents Lowell and Opal Cooley, who preceded him in death. Cooley graduated from Arlington High School in 1959, having served as class president, trumpet player and scrappy leader of the Arlington Wildcats basketball and baseball teams.
After attending Butler University, he married Regenia Carole Pedigo on Nov. 12, 1960. She was the love of his life, and together they raised three sons who survive: Robert (Kellie) Cooley of Newton, N.C., Brian (Lesa) Cooley of Noblesville and Barry (Pamela) Cooley of Portland, Ore., He was also so proud of his four grandsons, Brian, Matthew, Andrew and Brandon, and one granddaughter, Madison, who survive. Cooley is also survived by his sister, Betty (Bob) Fancher of Arlington and his brother, Garry (Connie) Cooley of Milroy, Ind. He was preceded in death by his uncles, Leon Cooley, Omer Cooley and Pete Bogue.
Detective Sergeant Cooley proudly served 27 years with the Indiana State Police, received many honors and mentored a new generation of Indiana’s finest. During his service, he was the recipient of the State of Indiana’s highest honor, “Sagamore of the Wabash”. After state retirement, he became manager of Security for American Trans Air Airlines for 10 years. Those years spanned the most challenging years in our country’s aviation history, including 9/11. Security measures he developed during those years are still in place today, working to keep American safe from threats at home and abroad.
Besides a storied career and long-fought battle, he enjoyed fishing, golfing and 10K running. He also enjoyed time with his many friends from the law enforcement fraternity, but most of all, cherished his time with his beloved wife, Jeannie, and wonderful family.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate contributions to G.I.S.T. Research, Knight Cancer Institute, Oregon Health & Sciences University, Mail Code CH7M, 3303 S.W. Bond Ave., Portland, OR 97239 or Rush County Community Foundation, Inc., 117 N. Main St, Rushville, IN 46173.