The unexpected death of Edward K. “Ed” Cook, Jr., 89, last Tuesday, October 4, 2016 was a shock to family, friends and the community at large.
Mr. Cook was a giant in the field of education and a true friend to his chosen town and community.
A native of Pulaski County, Kentucky, Mr. Cook was a graduate of Berea College. He earned a Master’s degree in education from East Tennessee State University, attended the Munich, Germany branch of Boston University, and accrued hours toward a doctorate in education from the Karlsruhe, Germany branch of the University of Southern California.
Mr. Cook was principal of Shouns Elementary and Mountain City Grammar Schools before accepting a position with the United States Dependent Schools, European Area (USDESEA). While overseas for 20 years, Mr. Cook served as the youngest of the five superintendents who oversaw American schools stretching from Pakistan to England. At one time, he had the unique position of simultaneously overseeing schools on three continents (Europe, Asia, and Africa) with schools in Greece, Crete, Libya, Ethiopia, Pakistan, and Turkey. He was also variously stationed in England, Germany, and France.
Mr. Cook was a Mason, and was one of the few surviving veterans of WWII in Johnson County, having served in the United States Navy.
He and his wife, Evelyn McQueen Cook, a native of Shady Valley, returned to Johnson County, Tennessee to live in the late 1970’s where they immediately immersed themselves in the community. He has served on multiple committees and boards and dedicated himself to many volunteer positions and civic organizations over the years. An expert gardener, enthusiastic horseman, avid reader and author, Mr. Cook lived an active and full lifestyle, and his love for people was evident wherever he went.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Thursday, October 13 at 11:00 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Mountain City.
A complete obituary can be seen in today’s Tomahawk or here on our website.