Keenan Cooper

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper.

Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper

Died July 5, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

19, of Wahpeton, N.D.; assigned to the 4th Squadron, 73rd Armor Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died July 5 in Yakuta, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device. Also killed was Spc. Jerod H. Osborne.

Soft-spoken soldier had long wanted to join Army

Spc. Keenan Cooper often didn’t say much and just wanted to do his job, but that didn’t mean he was boring.

His jokes always seemed funnier because people didn’t expect it from the quiet guy, said Karley Vetter, a fellow 2008 graduate of Wahpeton High School in Cooper’s hometown of Wahpeton, N.D.

Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper
Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper

“He was the most soft-spoken person,” she said, “but you could tell the wheels were always going in his head.”

Cooper was an avid outdoorsman and loved going on archery shoots with his father, driving new Mustangs and playing with Coal, the family dog, said the Rev. Mike Adams, who’d known him for years.

Adams said Cooper had long wanted to be in the military.

“He knew when he was in fourth grade that he would be in the Army someday,” Adams said. “When he made up his mind to do something, he did it.”

Cooper was killed in a roadside bombing in Yakuta, Afghanistan, on July 5, the week before his 20th birthday and a month before he was slated to return home. He was assigned to Fort Bragg.

Survivors include April Travis, the girl he planned to marry in October; his parents, David and Heather; and four younger siblings, Dawson, Twyla, Gabriella and Carly.

Wahpeton soldier killed in Afghanistan

An Army soldier from Wahpeton has been killed in Afghanistan, his family’s spokesman said Tuesday.

Nineteen-year-old Army Spc. Keenan Cooper was killed on Monday, said the spokesman, the Rev. Mike Adams, of Faith Church in Wahpeton.

The military did not release details of Cooper’s death to his family, Adams said.

“Everybody is pretty sure it was a roadside bomb,” Adams said. “That’s what was insinuated.”

Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper
Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper

Cooper was serving with the Fort Bragg, N.C.-based 82nd Airborne Division, said Adams, who said he had known Cooper since the soldier was eight years old.

Adams said the soldier’s parents, Dave and Heather Cooper, were notified Monday night. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Keenan Cooper would have celebrated his 20th birthday next week and was slated to complete his first tour of duty in Afghanistan next month, Adams said.

“He was just about ready to come home,” Adams said.

Cooper was engaged to April Travis and the couple planned to marry in October, Adams said.

The lifelong Wahpeton resident had returned to his hometown last month for a visit.

“He was in good spirits,” Adams said. “He was quite happy to see his fiancé and seemed happy to be in church. He was doing really well.”

Cooper’s parents and his fiancée were scheduled to travel to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware when his body is returned this week, Adams said.

“He knew when he was in fourth grade that he would be in the Army someday,” Adams said. “When he made up his mind to do something, he did it.”

Cooper, a 2008 graduate of Wahpeton High School, was friendly and soft-spoken, Adams said.

“He was a man of few words but if you caught him at the right time, he could be as funny as possible,” Adams said.

As of July 5, 2010, 16 U.S. service members from North Dakota or serving with North Dakota military units have been reported killed while on duty in Iraq. Five others were killed in Afghanistan.


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