Vista, CA — Flags are at half-staff on City of Vista facilities through Thursday, September 26 in honor of former City Councilmember Major General Richard “Dick” Cooke who passed away on September 18, 2019. A retired two-star USMC General fighter pilot, Dick Cooke served on the Vista Council from 1996-2000, serving as Mayor Pro Tem in 1999. After graduating from Buffalo State Teacher’s College in 1952, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. He retired as a U.S. Marine Corps Major General. He was awarded the Air Medal (Five Awards) for meritorious achievement in aerial flight during the Vietnam War. The award is for achievement while participating in aerial flight and/or for a single act of heroism against an armed enemy.
Vista Mayor Judy Ritter ordered the City’s flags half-staff in memory of Dick Cooke. “We are saddened to hear of the passing of Dick,” said Mayor Ritter. “Dick served on the City Council with a passion and a vision for the city’s future. I remember he often leaned on his military experience in order to get things done. He cared deeply for our city and was dedicated to the Vista community. I served with Dick for two years on the City Council and noticed he was the first to volunteer his time or to help out, asking nothing in return. He was a true patriot and will be missed. Our condolences go out to his family.”