Local News

Man whose wife was killed in crash offers forgiveness

Posted February 6, 2015

Tim Cooper went to pick up his wife, Rebie Cooper, from her job at the Tammy Lynn Center on Saturday.

She had worked an overnight double shift at the center, which serves children and adults with developmental problems. So, Tim Cooper knew she would be exhausted.

He wanted her to be safe. He wanted her not to drive.

But as he drove her home along Jones Sausage Road, where they chatted about their new Chihuahua named JoJo, a speeding Buick struck them from behind.

The impact pushed them off the road and into a tree. Rebie Cooper, who married Tim just over a year ago, was taken to an intensive care unit. She never recovered.

Keondre Lamont Griffin, 19, was charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle.

 The grieving husband says he bears no hatred toward the suspect.

“You have your own guilt, and you have your own issues that you bear within yourself,” Tim Cooper said. “So no, if I could say anything to him, I’d say, ‘I forgive you, because accidents happen, things happen and life happens.’”

He said he’s grateful for the time he had with Rebie, who was 30 years old. She and Tim met a couple of years ago while they both worked as corrections officers. He says she was a woman of God who kept a stack of Bibles and Christian literature in the house.

“Oh man, it was love at first sight,” Tim Cooper said.

He said the driver who hit his car didn’t get up that day intent on shattering a life. He said the driver should be punished, but also forgiven.

“You just have to appreciate every moment that you have with your loved ones and your family and your friends,” Tim Cooper said. “And don’t let night fall on your wrath.”


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  • LetsBeFair Feb 8, 2015

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    Not sure folks understand me correctly. maybe he can just take a passive high road and forgive. But it still doesn't make it right. It could have been my wife. And if the driver didn't have any drugs or alcohol in him .. this makes it right? ... I'd driven an ambulance for 3 years, people do stupid things all the time, most never make the news. this was a senseless accident.

  • madcitysw Feb 7, 2015

    Dear Mr. Cooper,

    I am in great morose of the wonderful wife that you had. Normally I don't comment such things, but you are correct that this is just part of life and we do make such mistakes even when we are young and you have did the hardest thing to able to forgive the person who is responsible for the death of your wife. However I wish we lived in a world that people would be more careful of their actions more to prevent these kind of heartaches. May you find another great wife in the future.

  • sendusmessage Feb 7, 2015

    He's a better man than I am! But he's totally right.

  • Shae Osborn Feb 7, 2015
    user avatar

    As he had qouted about his wife and her faith it is clear that the same faith rest within him as well. Sorry for your loss and bless you for your forgivness

  • ncdawg95 Feb 7, 2015

    The power of forgiveness sets your own heart free. Otherwise darkness and anger will smother your soul.

  • moomoo Feb 7, 2015

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    That's for him to deal with, not you. So take your "Please" to somewhere else.

  • tierneemalinadeveaux Feb 7, 2015

    What an honorable man. God is definitely pleased. My heart goes out to him and his family.

  • fender Feb 7, 2015

    This reminds me of a song about forgiveness. God bless you Tim.


  • Wayne R. Douglas Feb 7, 2015
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    There is no evidence of any drugs or alcohol, being a factor in this "accident". I know this will be hard for you to understand, but humans do make mistakes. Obviously, you have never had this phenomenon occur in your life, because you are perfect. For the rest of us, including Mr. Cooper, we know that accidents do happen. There was no ill intent. No malice. Only an accident. Mr Cooper appears to be an awesome man. If you take the time to look, you could most likely learn something from him.

    Mr. Cooper, I am sorry for your loss. You were lucky enough to spend a part of your life, with a strong woman. A woman with the dedication to work with people who have some life problems. She was giving of herself. She put others before herself. She was a devout follower of God. She loved her fellow humans, and she loved you. She still loves you. Be strong through this terrible time. Trust in God. He will guide you.

  • Jack Miller Feb 7, 2015
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    exactly what I was about to write. A good example here. I cannot say I would be so openly forgiving. What a good example.