Clarke Thomas Cooper, Jr. died peacefully on Friday, October 6. He was born in 1929 to Clarke T. and Katherine Montague Cooper in Winchester, Virginia. He attended Handley High School and Augusta Military Academy, and studied architecture at Carnegie Institute of Technology.

As a lieutenant in the Army he was made chief of the design team for the 130th Engineer Aviation Brigade in Japan. Years later he still never would tell his children what he had worked on as he had never heard whether the project had been declassified.

After leaving the Army he began practicing architecture in Winchester, then moved to Washington, DC, eventually becoming a partner in the firm of Walton, Madden & Cooper.

He got the attention of his bride-to-be, Shirley Sutliff, on their first date when he sketched one of his projects on a napkin — upside-down, so she could see it right across the table, and with his left hand. Six months later they were married.

He designed apartment buildings, hotels and schools all around the DC area. Later his career took an unexpected ecclesiastical turn as he got involved in a number of long-term church projects, including a major renovation of the National City Christian Church, the master plan for the campus of the Virginia Theological Seminary and a new building for Lynn House Nursing Facility. Among other offices he was president of the D.C. chapter of the American Institute of Architects, vice president of the Metropolitan Club, trustee of the College of Preachers at Washington Cathedral and a member of the vestry at St. Paul’s Church in Alexandria.

He designed just one project for himself: a house for his family in Phippsburg, Maine. He loved it and the Midcoast dearly and contrived to spend as much time there as he decently could.

He is survived by his wife Shirley, their children Clarke, Robert and Katherine (Hoffman), and four grandchildren. A funeral service will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 228 S. Pitt St., Alexandria, Virginia, at 2pm Thursday, October 19.