Robert "Rob" Cook Jr.

Feb 7th 1976 - Nov 16th 2011

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When we reflect on the life of Robert “Rob” Cook, we celebrate the way he touched our lives in so many special ways. He was a real character who took everything to the extreme. Rob held his family close to his heart and possessed a strong, personal faith that was his constant companion. Although we would have wished for more time with Rob, the memories we have of his free spirit, his fun-loving heart, and his timeless soul will remain forever near and dear to all our hearts.

The decade of the seventies was a pivotal time in our nation’s history as the social changes that defined the sixties only continued to shape this decade as well. Our country’s involvement in the Vietnam War still divided us while the floppy disc, the laser printer, and the barcode scanner provided a glimpse into the future technology would bring in the years to come. Nestled within this colorful time was the year 1976 that boasted of great anticipation for one active family from Kalamazoo, Michigan, since as the year dawned they were anxiously awaiting the arrival of a new baby. Their wait was over during the cold of winter when baby Robert was born on February 7th. He was the third child born to his parents, Robert and Carol (Burr) Cook. Known as Baby Rob in his family, he was raised in the family home alongside his older sisters, Carie and Chris. Rob’s father worked as an electrician while his mother focused her attention in the home until her children were old enough to all be in school.

As a young boy Rob experienced a childhood that was filled with the same things that many of his peers experienced. He attended Schoolcraft Schools where he liked to play soccer and loved football. Rob was easy to please when it came to preparing food as nachos and SpaghettiO's suited him just fine. After being away from the area for a time, Rob returned and graduated through Portage Central.

Throughout his life Rob was a man of many interests. He was a video game fanatic who didn’t just play the games, he became a character in whatever world appeared on the screen. Those who knew Rob were well aware of his allegiance to the University of Michigan, and he had an extensive collection of whatever he could find with the school’s name on it to show for it. He had a strong faith and attended either Connections Community Church or Riverside Church in Three Rivers. When it came to the music he enjoyed, Rob was heavy metal all the way including his favorite Poison song, “Every Rose Has Its Thorn,” in addition to Eminem’s music. He always had a love for animals and most recently had a cat as a companion he enjoyed spending time with. Rob loved anyplace warm, which is why he was not at all a fan of Michigan winters and would rather have been anywhere without the cold and snow. Rob’s favorite day was payday, and his father would be quick to add that it didn’t matter whether it was his payday or the payday of one of his parents.

The constant, stabilizing force in Rob’s life was the people he loved. He was especially close to his grandparents, Bob and Julie Burr, and he also treasured the relationships he shared with his nieces, nephews, and two great-nephews.

With what would seem to be so many years in which to write his life’s song, Robert Cook, Jr. was taken from those he loved much too soon. When he loved, he loved deeply and when he did something, it was always to the extreme. Nothing with Rob was ordinary, but that is what made him so much fun to be around. He will be deeply missed while his memory is forever cherished.

Robert “Rob” Cook of Schoolcraft died on Wednesday, November 16, 2011. Rob’s family includes his mother, Carol Cook of Schoolcraft; father, Bob Cook, of Schoolcraft; two sisters, Carie Cook, of Schoolcraft and Chris (Russ) Henderson, of Schoolcraft; maternal grandparents, Bob and Julie Burr, of Schoolcraft; and several nieces and nephews and two great-nephews. The family will receive friends on Monday from 11-12 noon at the Life Story Funeral Home, 409 S. Main St., Vicksburg (649-1697). Funeral services will be held on Monday at 12 noon at the same location. Please visit Rob’s memory page at, where you can sign his memory book online before coming to the funeral home. Those who wish may make a memorial donation to the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission.

Robert Cook