Ron Cope (1911-92) and Carol (Ida Schrepel) Cope (1909-2012) helped change the face of their adopted hometown of Kearney over three-quarters of a century of community service and philanthropy. Their names appear on educational, medical and cultural institutions throughout their city and region. They left their mark on their state through Ron's service in Nebraska’s unique Unicameral Legislature. Their intense love for each other and their fellow Nebraskans continues to find expression through the work of the foundation they left behind.
Ron & Carol Cope: A Nebraska Love Story takes its readers across a broad swath of Nebraska and its history: the Civil War battlefields and Old West frontier towns of their ancestors; the rolling farm fields of Pawnee County in southeast Nebraska, where they grew up, met, taught and fell in love; Depression-era North Platte, incubator of their business and community interests; the couple's Claussen's shoe stores; the halls of Nebraska’s majestic State Capitol; and the evolution of Kearney into the energetic western point of Nebraska's “Tri-Cities” triangle through wartime blessings, careful, insightful leadership and a selfless generosity modeled by the Copes, their peers and their many friends.
Theirs is a story of deep faith, internal struggles and undying devotion through eight years of courtship, 52 years of marriage and beyond. The love story of Ron and Carol Cope cannot be contained to the city they chose and the people they made their family. Theirs is a love, and a story, for all Nebraska.
Ron & Carol Cope is the final product of 3½ years of research and writing, based primarily on the contents of some 160 boxes of papers, diaries, letters, photographs, slides and home movies left behind after Carol’s death and preserved by the Ron & Carol Cope Foundation. The archive, along with other personal possessions of the Copes, now resides at the Buffalo County Historical Society Trails & Rails Museum in Kearney.
(price of the book includes sales tax)