Updated: Jan 23, 2020
Jerry Cooley, 78, went home to be with the Lord January 18, 2020 from his residence.
Born in the Dothan area, his family moved and later settled in Holmes County where he graduated from Poplar Springs and was an active church member of Bethel Baptist Church. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy Reserve as a Naval Cadet in 1962 after 2 years at Chipola. Upon completion of flight school, he earned his wings and was commissioned as ensign USNR. In 1963, he married Carolyn Phillips of Bonifay and they relocated to his first duty station, Naval Air Station Jacksonville. Jerry enjoyed his transition to jet aircraft. His favorite planes were the F-8 and A-4. After finishing his active duty tour in 1968, primarily training aircraft carrier personnel, he remained in the reserves USNR, inactive and they returned to Holmes County where they wanted to raise their family. He was involved in agri-business through the cultivation, aerial protection and commercial harvest of local area crops as well as retail supply to area farmers. He served his beloved community as District 5 County Commissioner 1993-1996 and Chairman of the Tri-County Airport Authority for a number of years. He never lost his passion for this country, flying, family, and especially for his Savior, Jesus Christ. He had been a Deacon at Mt. Olive Baptist Church since 1992.
He was preceded in death by his parents, W.L. Cooley and Aldine Kirkland Cooley; sisters, Betty King and Sally Carter; and brother Jack Cooley.
Survivors include his wife, Carolyn Phillips Cooley; son, Anthony Cooley (Rachael), and daughter, Amy Cooley Frix (Joe); grandsons, Zach, Clayton and Caleb Cooley (fiancée Shauni Hooper); sisters, Sara Mears (William), Helen Dowling (Gerald), Sharon Griffin (Greg); sisters-in-law, Barbara Lowery Cooley; Altha Curry (Simon), Joy Galloway (Jerry), Sue Markham (Tim); and a number of nieces and nephews as well as great and great-great-nieces and nephews.
The family will welcome friends and extended family 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday evening at Peel Funeral Home.
Funeral services will be held 10 a.m. Saturday morning at Mt. Olive Baptist Church. Interment will follow immediately in the Mt. Olive Church Cemetery.
Flowers are accepted and remembrances may be given to Emerald Coast Hospice, www.emeraldcoasthospice.org.