MNU President David J. Spittal announced the unexpected passing of Dr. D. Ray Cook, trustee, colleague, and friend of MidAmerica Nazarene University. Dr. Cook served on the MNU board of trustees for 33 years, and was the chair of the board from 1999-2009. Dr. Cook passed away Nov. 8, 2012, in Greece.

Ray ElaineSpittal said Cook loved MNU – especially its students. 

“Through the years, Dr. Cook provided leadership and generous support for many major improvements to our campus, including the Cook Center, named in his honor; Bell Cultural Events Center; and the Harvest Prayer Sculpture, which was his special gift to our campus,” Spittal said. 

Recently retired from his medical practice in Wichita, Kan., Dr. Cook was devoted to his family and his church. Spittal recalled Cook’s desire to help others, especially in ways that would honor his faith.

“His compassion for those in need and for the ministries of the church was clearly evident in the life he led,” said Spittal. “The many gifts he gave were offerings to the Lord he loved.  He did not seek honor for himself, but lived the life of a servant, and influenced the lives of those who had opportunity to know him.”

Dr. Cook leaves behind his wife Elaine; his daughter Candi Brown (husband, Mark) and their children Ben, Will, Graham and Betsy; his son Chad (wife, Jill) and their children Johnnie, Spencer, Freddie, and Lucy; as well as an extended family.

Photo: Dr. D. Ray and Elaine Cook.

Upon announcing Cook’s passing, Spittal referenced the scripture for Nov. 8 in Dr. Donald Metz’s devotional book, Scaling the Heights

 …Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed – in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality.  When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true:  'Death has been swallowed up in victory.'

Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?

This is a fitting reminder as we consider the life and service of a friend that we will miss greatly,” said Spittal. “Dr. Ray Cook was a true pioneer.  We honor his life and his memory today and will forever be blessed by his legacy. Today the MNU community celebrates the life of Dr. Ray Cook, and we do so with the knowledge that he is now in the presence of the One he has loved and served.”

Read more here from Nazarene Communications Network.