Dr. George Alexander Cooke

November 17, 2021
In loving memory ~
Dr. George Alexander Cooke, 86, of Victoria and Vernon, BC, passed away on November 17, 2021 at Hearthstone Manor in Vernon, surrounded by his family.
George was born on Dominion Day, 1935 in Moncton, NB, to the late Rita (Cochrane) and A. MacDonald Cooke. He and younger brother David grew up spending happy summers in Wallace, NovaScotia, and Wallace always held a special place in his heart. He excelled in science and mathematics, receiving his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Mount Allison University and his PhD in Chemistry from the University of Alberta. While at Mount Allison, he met Elaine Smith, and the two married in 1958. His academic work took them across Canada, and in the late 1960s they moved their young family to the United States, where George began his career. George and Elaine had four children, and although their marriage ended, they remained connected, sharing many joyful and meaningful times in the lives of their children and grandchildren.
George instilled a love of learning in his children, as his parents had in him. Some of his proudest moments were witnessing their academic achievements and milestones. Although he was a man of science, George also loved language, and was always ready with the perfect word or a bad pun. He was an aficionado of many things – from coffee to curling to sci fi to Formula 1 – and was known to explain to American friends the correct pronunciation of the letter z and the superiority of Canadian football.
When George met Dr. Barbara Efrat through mutual friends Don and Lydia Kasianchuk, his next chapter began. And Barb’s energy, intellect, and humor transformed his life. Their years together were filled with the things they loved most: friends, family, art, music, books, gourmet food, and a few special cats. They returned to Canada – first to Toronto, where they married, and then to Barb’s beloved Victoria. We will always picture them strolling down Victoria streets together, hand in hand.
George is survived by three children from his marriage to Elaine Smith: Andrea Perrier (Ken), Jeffrey Cooke (Michelle), and Leslie Cooke Foxhall (Marc). He is also survived by his grandchildren Angeli and Naomi Cooke, and Connor and Will Perrier; sisters-in-law Dianne Cooke and Amy Lynn Silverman; and nieces Hilary Cooke and Meghan Cooke (Matt Kennedy).
He was predeceased by his parents, A. MacDonald and Rita Cooke, his wife Barbara Silverman Efrat, his brother J. David Cooke, and his and Elaine Smith’s son Julian Cooke. The family would like to express their gratitude to the wonderful staff at Hearthstone Manor for supporting George with boundless compassion and care in his final years.
Donations in George’s memory may be made to the Alzheimer Society of Canada:

Your condolences will be approved within one business day. You will need a valid Facebook account. Please email us if you have any questions.