Obituary of Sylvia Elcina Cooper
Sylvia was born on August 1st, 1939 to the parents of David and Laurestina Webb. She was in the middle of seven living children born to the couple. They made their home in the village of Hard Bargain, Williamsville located in South West Trinidad.
Sylvia focused intently on her education and in 1957 she graduated with her Senior Cambridge Certificate from Naparima Girl’s High School. Disappointed over her inability to commute to a teaching position she landed after leaving Secondary School, she then moved to Port-Of-Spain to live with her Paternal Aunt, in order to seek employment. After working as a Civil Servant in the Central Statistical Office and the Post Office, she was hired as an External Auditor in the Auditor General’s Department of Trinidad & Tobago.
While on one of her field assignments at the Customs House, she met the very handsome Julius Cooper who was a Customs Clerk with Navarro’s Brokerage Firm. Their relationship grew from flirty to serious and on September 30th, 1961, they were married at St. John’s Baptist Church, where Sylvia was a member at the time. The couple began living with Julius’s parents in San Juan, Trinidad.
After the birth of their third child, Julius and Sylvia moved into their own home, where they raised their children until their migration to the United States of America. While raising her family, Sylvia also served in various capacities at St. John’s Baptist Church. She was an active member of the Ushers Group, the Choir, President of the Women’s Group, for over twelve years and an Officer of the Executive Committee of the Women’s Department of the Baptist Union of Trinidad & Tobago. She became a Deaconess and a member of the Board of Management in 1981, she served faithfully up until her migration to the United States in 1992.
Sylvia was also blessed with good success in her career, from 1958 till her retirement in 1992. She worked diligently in the Auditor General’s Department, rising consistently through the ranks to Audit Manager, and also acted in an Administrative capacity. Though she completed numerous assignments, probably the most memorable was her assignment to the Trinidad & Tobago Embassy in Lagos, Nigeria. In 1992, Sylvia retired from the Auditor General’s Department, and shortly after migrated to the United States of America.
Sylvia settled with her husband in Queens, New York. She became a member of the Salvation Tabernacle Church in Queens, NY. She began pursuing a College Education and obtained an Associates Degree in Sociology from Queensborough Community College in 1997, followed by a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology, in 2006 from Vision International University; classes for this degree were held at Bethlehem Missionary Church. Sylvia served in various capacities at Salvation Tabernacle such as Choir Director, Board Member and Associate Pastor. She even wrote, sang and recorded several songs which are all included in her CD which was produced in 2005.
In 2006, Sylvia and her husband moved to Ocala, Florida and began yet a new chapter in their lives. Steadfastly trusting God and staunchly by her husband’s side through their challenges, especially the extended illness of her husband Julius, whom she faithfully cared for up until his death on October 3rd, 2013. Sylvia faithfully served at the Hebron Evangelical Church in Ocala, Florida, up until her passing on July 5th, 2018, as Board Member, Minister, Bible School Lecturer at the Hebron Bible Institute, Secretary, Bible Study Teacher and many other functions. She also obtained her Ph.D. from the Hebron Bible Institute.
She was preceded in death by her sisters, Joyce, Gloria and Yvonne and her brother Stephen. She is survived by her sister Isabel and her brothers Philbert and Earl; Sons: Anthony, Noel and Julius; Daughters: Marlene and Angela; Step-Daughter Joan; Sons in Law: David Glenn and Alleyne Paul; Daughters in Law: Heekyung and Jacklyn; Grandsons: Darren, Bryan, Preston and Joshua; Granddaughters: Tiffany, Carisse, Gabrielle, Danielle, Arielle, Amanda, Sara, and Chante; Nieces Marylee and Fern both of whom lived with her for several years; also many other nieces and nephews, and a host of relatives and friends.
Sylvia Cooper will be remembered for her Faith, Strength and Kindness and she is honored by her children and the many lives she has touched.
Proverbs: 31:29-31 NKJV
“Many daughters have done well,
But you excel them all.”
30 Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, But a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands,
And let her own works praise her in the gates.”