Richard CoorPender Brooke
Richard CoorPender Brooke, (“Dick”) passed away from earthly life to eternal life on Tuesday, January 17, 2012, after living more than 92 wonderful years. His determined spirit prevailed throughout his life. He was born in Clifton, Arizona on the 24th of October, 1919. He was the second son and youngest child of Chase Jackson Brooke and Anna CoorPender Young Brooke. He passed away at home in San Antonio, Texas, surrounded by family.
Most of Richard’s childhood memories came from his time in Rosita, Coahuila, Mexico where his family moved when he was six. In 1934, in his second year of high school, he went to Texas Military Institute in San Antonio. After graduating from TMI in May of 1937, he entered Rice Institute in Houston. The education that he received at Rice was one of his proudest accomplishments In 1942, before his final semester at Rice, Richard enlisted into the army. He served in the Army Air Corps where he functioned as a B- 17 navigator. He flew 25 combat bombing missions over enemy occupied Continental Europe. He served in several other squadrons until he took Terminal Leave on the 15th of November, 1945. Richard was proud of the time he spent serving his country and was one of the most patriotic people we knew. His navigation skills also served him well while trying to teach his children and grandchildren how to read a map, though some of us never found it simple to follow his “north, south, east, west” directions.
Later in Nov. of 1945, he moved to Rosita, Coahuila, Mexico to work as an engineer for ASARCO, American Smelting And Refining, where he met his wife of 57 years, Catalina Garza Davila. They started a family in Rosita and stayed there for the birth of their first five children. In 1961, the family moved to Texas where he held a variety of jobs as a mechanical engineer until his retirement in 1988.
In 1968 Dick and Cata bought a house in Balcones Heights and lived there for the remainder of their years. He served on the Balcones Heights City Council, the Balcones Heights Planning and Zoning Commission, the vestry at Trinity Episcopal Church, and on the Bexar County Appraisal Review Board. Richard’s commitment to God was reflected in his service to his church, and always having his children attend. He attended interdenominational Bible studies with Cata, and studied the Book of Common Prayer and his Bible on his own until his dying day. His trust in Jesus for salvation, gave him the grace to die at peace.
His legacy lives on through his children and their families.
He is survived by his ten children and their spouses: Estela & Richard Brooke, Teri & Robert Brooke, Ann & Alex Haas, Frances & Mark McArthur, Dawn & William Brooke, Elizabeth Brooke-Garza, Patricia & Robert Weber, Keri & Edward Brooke, Martha & Gordon Young, Ann & George Brooke; his 29 grandchildren and their spouses: Mónica McArthur & Michael Holbrook, Kathleen McArthur & Matthew Gross, Sarah & Richard Brooke, Christina & Benjamin McArthur, Angelique & Valentino Castañeda, E. Amadis Brooke, Jennifer & Robert McArthur, Hannah & Allen Haas, Martha Haas, Elizabeth Weber, Sarah Haas, Robert Weber, III, William Brooke, Chase Brooke, Jessica Saldinger, David Weber, W. Marshall Brooke, Amy Brooke, Jacob Saldinger, Joshua Young, Rebekah Weber, Steven Brooke, Samuel Saldinger, David Brooke, Zachary Brooke, Ethan Young, Alison Brooke, Vanessa Brooke, Amanda Young; and his great grandchildren: Gabriela Catalina McArthur, Colton McArthur, Jacqueline Castaneda, and Baby Brooke.
His family was his proudest accomplishment. His children often heard him say, “At one time, I thought I hadn’t accomplished much and then I looked at my children and realized I am the richest man alive.”