Richard Russell Cook

Born: Mon., Nov. 10, 1930
Died: Tue., Dec. 19, 2017


10:00 AM to 11:00 AM, Fri., Dec. 29, 2017
Location: Woodville Baptist Church

Funeral Service

11:00 AM Fri., Dec. 29, 2017
Location: Woodville Baptist Church

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Ret. Colonel Richard Russell Cook, of Woodville, GA, died Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at St. Mary’s Good Samaritan Hospital in Greensboro, GA at the age of 87. He was born on November 10, 1930 in Sandersville, GA, the son of the late Lum Heard Cook and Willie Mae Edgar Cook.  He was named after Senator Richard Russell who served as the Governor of Georgia and in the United States Senate for almost 40 years.  He attended school in Woodville and was a graduate of Union Point High School.  He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Business at the University of Nebraska Omaha and his Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Alabama.  While attending the university, he served as the president of the Alabama Graduate School of Business Association and became a lifelong fan of the Crimson Tide.


In 1952, Richard was drafted into the United States Army and decided to make this his career.  With a recommendation letter from Senator Richard Russell, he was accepted into Officer Cadet School.  On August 1, 1954, he married the former Mary Grace Paul of Lexington and together they made the perfect military couple.  Richard proudly served his country in the Korean War and the Vietnam War where he received the Bronze Star of Valor as well as a Purple Heart.  Richard retired as a full Colonel after a distinguished career of more than thirty-one years of service.


After his retirement, Richard returned to Woodville where he was actively involved in the community.  He served as the Mayor of Woodville for many years and considered the establishment of the Welcome to Woodville signs, the city sidewalks, and the holiday decorations as three of his proudest accomplishments.  Richard was a member of the Woodville Baptist Church where he also served as a Deacon.  


Richard enjoyed farming, bird hunting and fishing at his lake.  He was noted for his sense of humor and for his ability to tell and pull off the perfect joke.  He adored his family and spending time with his grandchildren especially at the beach. He also treasured his friends and the many pets that enriched his life.


Survivors include his wife Mary Grace Cook of Woodville, GA; two daughters, Gracie Branch of Norman, OK and Catherine White and her husband Rick of College Park, GA; three grandchildren, Cassy Lynn Mathis, Logan Calaway Branch and Austin Cook Branch.  He was preceded in death by his sisters, Hallie Cook Davison and Eudene Hill “Cookie” DeGood.


Funeral Services will be held Friday, December 29, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. at the Woodville Baptist Church, 1191 Peachtree Avenue E., Woodville, GA 30669 with Dr. Lee Smith officiating.  Interment will follow in the Woodville Cemetery.  A reception will follow the service at the School House.  Serving as pallbearers are Johnny O’Neal, Russell Brock, Phil Brock, John Hill O’Neal, Logan Branch and Austin Branch.  The family will receive friends Friday, December 29, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. until time for the service at the church. The family requests that any memorials be made to the Oconee Regional Humane Society, 1020 Park Avenue, Suite 101, Greensboro, GA 30642. Callaway Funeral Home, 208 N. Rhodes St., Union Point, GA, (706) 486-4138, is in charge of arrangements. Visit us at to sign the online guest register.


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Condolence Booklet

Lucille Howard
   Posted Thu December 21, 2017
Richard will always be remembered as Woodville 's Mayor who brought Woodville into the 20th century--city water, sidewalks , school reuions, Woodville fairs to raise funds for the Fire Department . He will be misssed, but we will all have wonderful memories.

Wanda McCannon
   Posted Fri December 22, 2017
I was so sorry to hear about Mr. Richard. My prayers are with you all at this time.

Helen and Drake Taliaferro
   Posted Sat December 23, 2017
Please know that your family is in our thoughts and prayers!

Barbara Stewart Norris
   Posted Sun December 24, 2017
Grace, here are some of my happy memories of Richard.
Getting out statements at The Farmers Bank and getting into trouble
cutting up with my grandmother and me. They put me to work early.
He was always so concerned about the elderly black man that had
worked for him so many years. Coming up to Stewart Oil Co. for
the C3 transmission fluid for his tractor. I did not know that he
had passed away until church this morning. Pastor Llowe made the
comment that he was so funny.

Bobby (Bob) and Annabelle (Ann) Harris
   Posted Mon December 25, 2017
We have come to know Richard very well over the years as he was married to our former 1950 OCHS classmate, Mary Grace Paul. On visits to our Oglethorpe County parents home, Charles & Opal Harris and Johnnie & Demaris Craft, we stopped off in Woodville to visit, as well as many OCHS Reunions. We became good Email friends and until he began to lose his eyesight, we exchanged countless Email forwards that usually included an update on our families. Please know that we love you Grace, and family members. Our prayers are lifted up during this loss of our friend and your loved one.

Terri Pilgrim
   Posted Wed December 27, 2017

INDOOR GARDEN BASKET was sent by The Pilgrim Family.

Sending our Love and Prayers. The Pilgrim Family

LaVerne Ogletree
   Posted Thu December 28, 2017
Please accept my heartfelt sympathy. I have always admired the leadership shown by "Mayor Cook" during his terms of office.

Deborah Smith
   Posted Fri December 29, 2017
Mr. Richard Cook, Ret. Colonel and Mayor of the City of Woodville, will be greatly missed. Mr. Cook loved Woodville and its citizens. He worked hard to make Woodville a beautiful and safe place to live.

I am so ever grateful to Mayor Cook for the opportunies that he afforded me to extend my knowledge in the political arena in county and city government.

May God the Creator of all, be your strength, comforter, protector just whatever you all need during this time and forever.

Eddie & Tina Brown
   Posted Fri December 29, 2017
We are so saddened to hear of the passing of Mr. Cook. He was kind and generous to all who knew him. We had the privilege of living across the street from him for 17 years and always enjoyed the view of his home, across the pond. Please know your family will be in our prayers, as you grieve and rejoice the life, love and passion that was, Colonel Richard Cook. Many blessings of peace and love. The Browns

Robin Edgar
   Posted Thu February 22, 2018
Gracie and family, the children of Grady and Bee Edgar (Terry, Cheryl, Robin and Jay), send our love and sincere sympathy to each of you. Though we only met Richard a few times on our trips to stay with Aunt Willamae and Uncle Hurd, his gentleness, kindness and sense of humor remains in our memories. We hold you, Gracie, and Cathy in our hearts and prayers.