Landscapes 08

Cooper Braeden Woods

September 16, 1991 ~ August 24, 2020 (age 28)


Cooper Braeden Woods, 28, of Industry, Illinois, died Monday, August 24th, 2020, in rural McDonough County. Cooper was born September 16, 1991, in Macomb, Illinois, to Jeff and Tonya Woods.

Cooper is survived by his parents, his older brother, Logan Woods, of Ann Arbor, Michigan; his younger sister, Cassidy Woods, of O’Fallon, Illinois; his paternal grandmother, Judy Reynolds, (Kenny) of Table Grove, Illinois; his maternal grandparents, Gary and Letha Clark, of Tennessee, Illinois; uncle Jerry Woods; aunt and uncle Krista and Kevin Groenewold; and cousins Nolan Groenewold (Jacqui Matznick) and Madeline Groenewold, along with many, many aunts, uncles, and cousins. Cooper’s family was precious to him, and one of his final sentiments was that he loved his family more than he loved himself.

Cooper was preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Jim Woods, and his great-grandparents: Herman and Ruth Poen, Robert and Mary Woods, Roy and Edna Clark, and John and Evelyn Cuba.

Those who knew Cooper would tell you he was a gentle giant with an easy, ornery smile. A mountain man to the core, Cooper loved nothing more than spending time in nature, and in 2018 earned a degree in Forestry from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. Cooper was always up for a road trip, especially if it involved gravel roads. He could ride or drive the backroads for hours and many summer evenings were spent doing just that. If the ride led to the Full Scoop drive thru, all the better.

In recent months, Cooper spent much of his time at his favorite place--his grandparents’ farm near Tennessee. Cooper was content to run a chainsaw or swing an axe, hang metal or pour stepping stones; he knew the value of a good day’s work and treasured the history of the land and the farm. His connection to nature was undeniable. Inside that mountain man lurked a brilliant, eloquent mind that was attuned to the needs of others. He read Emerson and Thoreau and found himself to be like-minded. He was consistently working for the greater good, whether that was as a steward of the land or a philosophical discussion partner. Cooper lived his life intending to do no harm--to the people he loved, the land he respected, and the animals who lived wild and free. He took no more than he needed and eschewed materialism. In his almost-29 years, Cooper taught us how to be better people, leading by example each day.

Cooper’s heart and soul, his spirit and joy for life, will be missed. He struggled mightily in recent months but was never able to get back to the Cooper so many loved. We pray that he is now at peace.

Cremation rites have been accorded. A Celebration of Life and a time for family to meet with friends will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, August 28, 2020 at the family farm located at 165 Temple Road, Tennessee, Illinois. A Memorial service will be held at 7 p.m. with Pastor Bennett Woods officiating. Cooper would have liked you to wear casual attire. The family requests that masks be worn and social distancing be practiced. Private family graveside services will be held at a later time.

Memorials may be given to the SIU Forestry Club, the Industry United Methodist Church, or the great outdoors in the form of a newly planted tree.

Clugston-Tibbitts Funeral Home in Macomb is in charge of arrangements.

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