921 Pedros Road
1963 - 1965
Sacramento, CA, 12-28-63
     I moved to Turlock, California in 1963 where I had been hired as a Veterinary Pathologist in the local State of California Veterinary Laboratory. I moved into a tiny house which by luck happened to be across the street from Jo's mother's house. After a few days, Jo came over and introduced herself and welcomed me to the neighborhood. She asked to see "Mrs. Cooper," and when I said there was no "Mrs. Cooper," her mouth dropped open and she began to see me in a new light. Before we were married, she used to come across the street from her mothers house, ostensibly to watch programs on my color TV. I was similarly smitten and after a time, on December 28, 1963, we married in Carson City, Nevada. The ceremony was performed by the City Clerk, in the City Hall, with a janitor and a cleaning lady as witnesses. It couldn't have been nicer.

921 Pedros Road, Turlock, CA - 1964
       Jo loved this little house. There was a big peach tree on the property and Jo took great pride in canning peaches when they were in season. After our marriage, we would sit in the little kitchen at breakfast, at a very small table, which looked out on a nearby tree in which I had put a bird feeder. One very cold day, a little sparrow was on the feeder, all fluffed up because of the cold. Jo exclaimed, "Look at the little bird with the big stomach. She must be pregnant." I put on my veterinarian's cap and explained the facts of bird physiology to her.
      Her love of birds continued to her last days. One of the first things I did when we moved to Pasadena in 1972 was to install a bird feeder just outside the front window where she could see them as they came every day for food. It was one of her favorite diversions to watch them when she chose to spend so much of the time in her chair in the living room due to her disability. Every morning she would say, "Please feed the birds." Then she would watch for the regulars to arrive, mostly finches, but even including one squirrel.

It's Only Fair
Comment by Ralph Cooper, 9-7-08
     Both Jo and I had been fans of the Peanuts comic strip of Charles Schulz for a long time. When this panel appeared, shortly after our marriage, Jo cut it out and pasted it to our bulletin board which hung in the little kitchen. I think it expresses her philosopy, "tongue in cheek," especially as conditioned by her past life. I still have that tattered, yellowed clipping and it brings back some very happy memories to me whenever I look at it.

Personal communication from Elsah Cort, 3-2-08
     Jo's daughter Elsah recently visited the location of our first house on Pedros Road, now renamed "Pedras Road." The house is gone and the area has been subdivided and is covered with new homes.
      Also, the home of Jo's mother, Loa, across the street, has been moved away to another location and the land has also been subdivided and transformed into a neighborhood of new homes. Elsah was disappointed to see the changes. She remembered very fondly the old homes, then on the outskirts of the city, a very rural setting.

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