Former Hometown Hero and Raceland community fixture passes away

Published: Feb. 14, 2019 at 10:34 PM EST
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A community is mourning the loss of a friend, commissioner and former WSAZ Hometown Hero.

Mark Cooper, known to many as Commissioner Cooper, passed away Wednesday.

Mark touched the lives of athletes and fans alike in Raceland through his love for the Raceland Rams and his positive outlook.

He defied the odds when he was told at a young age that he wouldn't live past his teens. Mark lived on to have a full life, passing away at age 60.

Before he was 57, Mark had been sent to hospice care twice -- walking out both times. His determination and toughness did not go unnoticed, and he was named an honorary commissioner by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association.

In 2016, WSAZ named Mark a Hometown Hero.

Those who knew Mark described him an optimist and an inspiration to all – even an earthbound angel.

"I've said for many years that I believe God puts angels on this earth, and I believe that Mark is one of those angels," said Michael Salmons, Raceland's head football coach, when the Hometown Hero story aired. "He has meant so much to so many people in the Raceland community."

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