School 04

Sandra (DeForge) Cooper

June 12, 1954 ~ March 9, 2019 (age 64)


Sandra Jean Cooper (De Forge), 64, passed away on March 9, 2019 surrounded by her husband and two daughters.


A public visitation will be held at Renner-Wikoff Chapel & Crematory at 1900 South Philo Rd, Urbana on Friday, March 15, 2019 from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, March 16, 2019 at 11:00 am.


Sandra was preceded in death by her mother, Joyce Woodcock; father, Wayne De Forge; grandmother, Doris Boren, and grandfather, Rev. James A. Boren. Her family takes great comfort at the joy of their reunion in heaven.


She is survived by Phillip Cooper, her devoted husband of 43 years. After a brief courtship, they married in Champaign, IL on November 8, 1975. Sandra is lovingly remembered by her daughters, Lori Cooper of Gifford and Leslie Cooper of Urbana, and grandchildren, Grace Chariya and Cooper Acton, as well as her extended family and many friends. Sandra was the light of Phillip’s life, and she took wonderful care of her family. She went out of her way to make sure every holiday, birthday, and Christmas was very special and memorable.


Sandra was born in Danville, Illinois on June 12, 1954. She graduated from Urbana High School in 1972, attended Parkland and Eastern Illinois University for a Bachelors in special education in 1995, and earned a Masters from the University of Illinois in 2000.


She started her career as a telephone operator and then supervisor at Illinois Bell. After earning her degrees, she worked as a special education teacher and principal at Cunningham Children’s Home from 1994-2007. Sandra was the principal of Thomas Paine Elementary from 2007 until her retirement in 2017.


Sandra enjoyed gardening, traveling with her husband, and spending time with her family.


Memorial contributions can be made to the Urbana School District, earmarked for the Sandra Cooper Scholarship Fund for in-need Thomas Paine students pursuing further education after high school.  Condolences may be offered at

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