Ann Garver Cook

July 12, 1935 ~ May 30, 2023 (age 87) 87 Years Old


            Frances Ann Garver Cook, 87, died Tuesday, May 30, 2023, following a courageous battle with cancer. A lifelong resident of Concord, Cook was a beloved mother and grandmother, a pioneer for professional women, and a person of deep faith.

            Cook’s career at Cannon Mills Company of Kannapolis, included her roles as Director of Public Relations, Editor of The Cannon News, and Corporate Secretary for Cannon Mills and its subsidiaries. In 1984, Cannon Mills named Cook as its first female Vice President in the company’s then 97-year history. Cook later joined the executive leadership of Concord Telephone Company as Director of Public Relations and Human Resources

            Cook served numerous Cabarrus County nonprofits, including United Way, Kannapolis Chamber of Commerce, Barber-Scotia College’s Board of Visitors, and Piedmont Residential Development Center. She taught Sunday School at Mt. Olivet United Methodist Church for 20 years and served in church leadership roles at Mt. Olivet and Forest Hill United Methodist Church.

            Throughout her life, Cook loved words. In addition to her career accomplishments in Communication positions, she authored On Shady Lane – a collection of anecdotes about growing up with four siblings during the Depression, played Scrabble, and discovered countless words in “Word Search” volumes. During her school days at Winecoff High School, Cook was a basketball star, played the lead role in “Our Miss Brooks,” and marched as a letter-girl. She enjoyed trips to the beach, reading her Bible and devotionals, serving her delicious sweet tea, visiting with her grand-pups and grand-kitties, and moon-gazing.

            Beyond her significant professional and civic accomplishments, Cook viewed her family as her life’s greatest blessing, especially her three children, Rev. Dr. Cathy Cook, the late Keith W. Cook, and Kim Cook; her grandchildren, Jessica Cook (Justin Woodell), the late Christopher Cook Childers, Aaron Cook, Sarah Johnson (Cole Johnson), and Jordan Cline; and her sons-in-law, Ken Criffield and Vincent Cline. Other surviving family she cherished are her brothers, John Garver (Sandy Garver), Tommy Garver (the late Carolyn Garver), and Mike Garver (Faye Garver); and dear cousins, nieces, and nephews from her Coleman, Garver, Cook, and Winecoff family roots.

            Preceding her in death, in addition to her son, Keith, and her grandson, Christopher, were her parents, Virginia Coleman Garver Beaver and Kinnie W. Garver; and her sister, Shirley Garver Rakes.

            A Celebration of Life and Resurrection service will be held at the Chapel of Whitley’s Funeral Home, Kannapolis, on Saturday, June 3 at 10:00 a.m. Cook’s daughter, Rev. Dr. Cathy Cook, will officiate. The family will receive friends immediately following the service.

            In lieu of flowers, the family will be grateful for memorial donations to the Ann Garver Cook Scholarship Fund at Pfeiffer University (checks may be mailed to Pfeiffer University, PO Box 960, Misenheimer, NC, 28109); to the Keith Cook Automotive Scholarship (c/o Kim Cook, 198 Wellington Estates Dr., China Grove, NC, 28023); or to Hospice & Palliative Care of Cabarrus County (5003 Hospice Lane, Kannapolis, NC 28081).

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Memorial Service
June 3, 2023

10:00 AM
Whitley's Funeral Home Chapel
1748 Dale Earnhardt Blvd.
Kannapolis, NC 28083


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