Ron was born in North Little Rock, Arkansas to the late Bobby Joe and Almarie Todd Cook. He grew up in NLR and graduated from NLR High School. He obtained a degree in Respiratory Therapy and eventually became Director of Respiratory Therapy at Baptist Memorial Hospital. After leaving this position he worked in medical sales where he received many sales awards and finally retired from the Little Rock VA Medical Center Respiratory Department.
He had many interests and pursued them all with enthusiasm. When able, he enjoyed hunting and the outdoors. He loved sports either as a participant or spectator. His involvement in sports included coaching junior football teams, coaching grade school boys’ basketball, and playing on work and church softball teams. His favorite sports teams were St. Louis Cardinals, Dallas Cowboys, Arkansas Razorbacks, Blackburn College (IL) Beavers, and any Central Arkansas Christian School team.
Judy Hobbs and Ron were married in 1980 and their family grew to include two children, Laurie and James. During the children’s school years, he attended every grade school music program, dance recital, high school play, chorus performance and sporting event. He was in charge of the high school concession stand for CAC football and basketball games for several years and would receive compliments like “this is the best concession stand around”. He served as PFTA President and on the CAC Development Council.
The family attended Sylvan Hills Church of Christ. Ron taught in the Children’s’ Worship Program when his children were young , planned and helped cook, church wide fellowship dinners, chaperoned youth trips and was instrumental in starting the Sylvan Hills Medical Missions Program alongside Drs. Danny and Nancy Smelser. He was the deacon over the Medical Mission Program for many years. He was involved in planning and organizing at least 30 campaigns to Anguilla, Jamaica, Antigua, Mexico and Nicaragua. Many lives were touched medically and spiritually as a result of these trips.
Ron was a member of the US Army Reserves and was assigned to the 810th Station Hospital at Camp Pike in NLR. He retired after 28 years of service. His last duty position was 1st Sergeant. During Operation Desert Storm he was activated and ordered to report to Ft Hood, Texas where he stayed in support of the war for 6 months.
At age 50 he suffered a catastrophic stroke resulting in severe right sided weakness. He was determined to overcome his disabilities and never gave up. He would never been able to accomplish this without the support of his children. Following the stroke he continued to plan trips and then traveled internationally with the mission team on 11 trips. He also travelled to Havana, Cuba to attend an evangelistic conference in support of the preachers supported by Sylvan Hills Church of Christ
Life with Ron was never boring. He involved his family and friends in numerous projects and schemes. He was continually thinking of ways to spread the Gospel and help others. He had a remarkable memory for people, dates, times, addresses, and directions. He never met a stranger. He was most happy when he was with his children and grandchildren. His family was extremely important to him and he was proud of his children and would talk about them to anyone who would listen.
He is survived by his wife of 41 years, Judy Hobbs Cook, two children, Laurie Spencer (Justin) of Maumelle and James Cook of Jacksonville, two grandchildren Sloan and Liam Spencer of Maumelle, a brother Donnie Cook (Susan) of NLR and a brother-in-law and great friend Jim Hobbs of Highland, Illinois. Other family members who brought joy to his life were special nieces and nephews: Kelly Hobbs-Flores (Robert) of Wildwood, Missouri; Emily Cook Lipsmeyer (Nick) of Bigelow, Arkansas; Jonathan Cook of Little Rock, Arkansas; James K Hobbs (Wendy) of Temecula, California; Charis Hobbs of Litchfield, Illinois; Kathryn Hobbs Hearst (Scott) of Bella Vista, Arkansas; Christine Hobbs of Creve Coeur, Missouri; Joseph Hobbs (Bree) of St. Jacobs, Illinois and 14 great nieces and nephews (Clark, Holden, Mera and Piper Flores; Maximus and Asher Hobbs; Charlotte and Harrison Hearst; Artemis Hobbs and Jon Bentley, Kason, Peyton, Nikala, and Hailey Lipsmeyer).
Pallbearers at the church include best friends Lee Beason, Gene Carr, Ray Culvey, Marvin Fisher, Charles Fultz, and Dan McInturff. Honorary pallbearers are Wayne Welford and Billy Byrd who were always available to Ron whenever he needed them.
Pallbearers at the Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery will be members of the family; James Cook, Jonathan Cook, Donnie Cook, Jim Hobbs, James Hobbs, Joseph Hobbs, Justin Spencer, Liam Spencer and Jon Bentley Lipsmeyer.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to support mission efforts across the globe:
Christian Services Foundation (Tanzania Missions)
6630 County Road 41
Florence, Alabama 35633 or
Sylvan Hills Medical Missions
117 West Maryland Avenue
Sherwood, Arkansas 72120
Visitation will be from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM Sunday, January 23, 2022 at Smith Sherwood Funeral Home (7700 Hwy 107). Funeral service will be held at 11:00 AM Monday, January 24, 2022 at Sylvan Hills Church of Christ with burial following at 1:00 PM at Arkansas State Veterans Cemetery with full military honors.