Cooper at the age of 109
|Birth:||3 February 1897|
Port Hope, Michigan, USA
|Death:||4 May 2009|
Harbor Beach, Michigan, USA
|Age:||112 years, 90 days|
Beatrice "Bea" Cooper (née Martin; 3 February 1897 – 4 May 2009) was an American supercentenarian whose age has been validated by the Gerontology Research Group (GRG). She was the second-oldest validated person in the US state of Michigan when she died, only behind Daisey Bailey.
Cooper was born as Beatrice Martin in Port Hope, Michigan, United States on 3 February 1897. She was the youngest child of Irish-born James Moore Martin and Evalena (née Facer) Martin. Her mother died in 1901 aged 40, leaving her father to raise her and her siblings. She had a half-brother, Melvin (1913-1995), after her father remarried to Bertha Dommer, a German immigrant.
Cooper graduated from Port Hope High School in 1913. Unfortunately, her siblings all died at very young ages (22, 33, and 23), so Cooper had outlived them all by 1925. In 1924, she married her first husband Eber Ledsworth. The couple had a daughter, Thelma (married Ferguson). Eber Ledsworth died in 1941, and Cooper remarried to her second husband, Winter Cooper, in 1951.
Cooper’s father died in 1955 aged 89, and her husband died in 1968. Her half-brother Melvin died in 1980. She was a lifelong fan of the Detroit Tigers, rejoicing in their victory against the Cleveland Indians the day before she died. At the age of 103, she went to a Tigers game and met Ernie Harwell, famous sportscaster, in the booth.
Cooper died on 4 May 2009 at the age of 112 years, 90 days. She was survived by her daughter, several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.
- All Validated Supercentenarians by Age (1 January 2015) Gerontology Research Group
- Beatrice Martin Cooper Find A Grave
- One of world's oldest, Bea Cooper, dies at 112 MLive, 5 May 2009