Norma Jean Cope

Norma Jean Cope

March 31, 1933 - January 12, 2022

Norma Jean Cope of Ravenswood passed away peacefully on January 12, 2022, at Camden Clark Medical Center in Parkersburg, WV.

Born Norma Jean Gorrell on March 31, 1933, near Ravenswood, she was the eldest child of Oscar J. and Cletis Wheaton Gorrell. She was a born leader and had a genuine zest for life. Her care and compassion for others was immeasurable.

Shortly after graduating from Ravenswood High School, where she was involved in numerous activities, along with being an RHS majorette and being selected to attend WV Girl’s State, she moved to Huntington, WV where she met the love of her life, Garland J. Cope. The couple married on November 28, 1952. The following summer on a planned fishing trip to Canada, they stopped in Ravenswood to visit family, stopping at the North End Keystone Service to visit with her uncle and aunt, Harry and Georgia Gorrell. The next day, the young couple bought the store, cancelled their fishing trip and then embarked on their journey of becoming grocery store owners. She and her husband ran Cope’s Super Market in Ravenswood for 57 years. She always had a passion for cooking and sharing recipes, and that passion led her to running a successful and rewarding catering business out of Cope’s Market for several years. Always wanting to learn and broaden her horizons, she attended two different cooking schools at the Greenbrier in White Sulfur Springs, under the direction of Julie Dannenbaum.

Norma Jean attended Coleman Chapel Church as a child until 1980 when she transferred her membership to First United Methodist Church in Ravenswood. While at Coleman Chapel, she taught Sunday School for 17 years, was president of the young adult club and president of the Coleman Chapel’s Women Society.

Norma Jean loved serving her community and was quite involved in numerous clubs, organizations, politics and community events. She was a charter member and past president of the Business and Professional Women’s Club, where she received the Businesswoman of the year award. She was a charter member and past president of the Ravenswood Lioness Club and also served as president of the Jackson County Improvement Council. She was a member and past president of the Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce, member of the Ravenswood Jr. Women’s club, member and treasurer of the Jackson County Development Authority, on the Governor’s committee of Economic Development. She also served on the WV Chamber of Commerce Committee and worked on the All-WV City and County programs. She was a longtime member of the Jackson County Pilot Club, serving as President and was installed as the District Director of Public Relations. She was a member of the Jackson County Housing Authority, serving as Chairwoman.

Mrs. Cope served 4 terms on the Ravenswood City Council, attended WV leadership classes and served on the Governor’s Economic Development Council. She was a former member and officer of the Jackson General Hospital Auxiliary and former member and officer of the VFW Auxiliary. She was extremely active in the Ravenswood Ohio River Festival program, and active in the All-WV Community program. Mrs. Cope was also one of the Founders and served on the Board of Directors of the Citizens First Bank in Ravenswood.

She loved attending the Symphony in Charleston, WV, and became a member of the WV Charleston Symphony Women’s Auxiliary. Mrs. Cope was the fifth Jackson Countian and first woman chosen to receive the Prestigious Distinguished Service Award presented by the Boy Scouts of America.

Mrs. Cope was preceded in death by her parents, her husband; her brother, Max (Dorothy) Gorrell; sister Carolyn (Buck) Chapman; and Denny Carmichael, dear and loving aunt.

She is survived by her son, Jeff Cope and his wife Cathy; and daughter, Carole Moore and her husband, Ricky, all of Ravenswood; her six grandchildren: Misty (Chris) Parsons of Teays Valley, Marcus (Amber) Cope of Pittsburgh, Julie (Stuart) O’Shaughnessy of Lynchburg, VA. TJ (Candi) Moore of Elizabeth, Ali (Jay) Shumate of Ravenswood, and Ian (Katie) Moore of Pittsburgh; her 17 great grandchildren, whom she adored: Elias, Addie, Addison, Preston, Brad, Jake, Brooklyn, Derek, Lauren and Caroline on her son’s side, and Austin; Jenna, Chase, Kinzie, Maci, Tori and Evie on her daughter’s side; brothers, Marlyn (Dianne) Gorrell, Mike (Ginny) Gorrell of Little Hocking, OH; sister, Linda Callen of Haymarket, VA; and Sallie Cather, dear and loyal friend and caretaker.

Family and Friends may visit at First United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall on Friday, January 21, 2022 from 5-9 pm, and the service will also be held at First United Methodist on Saturday, January 22 at 1:00 pm with Pastor Dee Rhodes conducting the service. Burial will be in Ravenswood Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests gifts be made to the First United Methodist Church Memorial Fund, c/o of the Church, or the Norma Jean Cope Memorial at Coleman Chapel Church, c/o 710 McIntosh Street, Ravenswood.

The family loves hearing from past employees and heartwarming stories about their mother and grandmother. If anyone has any heartwarming stories of how she impacted their life, they’d love to hear from you.

Condolences may be expressed to the family at or on our Facebook page. Roush Funeral Home in Ravenswood is in charge of arrangements.

Ph: (304) 273-2152
Fx: (304) 273-8006