School board stalwart Cooper dies

COUNTY — The School District of Pickens County is mourning the loss of its longest-serving school board member.

Dr. Herb Cooper, who has represented the Clemson area on the board of trustees since 1992, died [cointent_lockedcontent] Tuesday after a battle with cancer.

“The news of Dr. Cooper’s passing is a very saddening for all of us who had the pleasure to know and work with him,” superintendent Dr. Danny Merck said. “He has served on our board of trustees for 24 years, and he has left a legacy of supporting education that will have an impact on generations of students. His experience, insight, love for students and love for his community will never be surpassed.

“I’m very grateful to have worked with him to build success for our students.”

A lifetime Clemson resident, Cooper was a 1959 graduate of Daniel High School. After graduating from Clemson University with a B.S. degree, Cooper then graduated from the Medical University of South Carolina with an M.D. degree.

After a one-year internship at Greenville Memorial Hospital, he spent8-3 Page 1A.indd more than four years in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, with one year in Vietnam, where he received a Bronze Star. He also spent more than three years in Berchtesgaden, Germany, where he met and married his wife, Traudl.

In 1973, he returned to Clemson and served as a family practice physician in the Clemson and Pendleton areas until his retirement in June 2015. In 2013, he was selected to be a member of the inaugural class of the D.W. Daniel Athletic Hall of Fame.

Cooper is survived by his wife and two children — Herbie and Heidi — who are both physicians and who were both valedictorians at Daniel High School.

Funeral arrangements for Cooper will be announced on Wednesday.[/cointent_lockedcontent]