Clarence Darrow Hooper
January 30, 1932 – August 19, 2018
Clarence Darrow Hooper, age 86, passed away on August 19, 2018, surrounded by his loving family. He was born on January 30, 1932, in Ft. Worth, TX to Wallace Hooper and Mabel Merritt Hooper. Throughout his long life, he became an accomplished businessman and athlete. His great athletic career started early in life. At the age of 11, Darrow made a Ft. Worth city record at J.P. Elder Junior High in shot put. At Northside High, he was one of the most versatile athletes and a 3-sport letterman in football, basketball and track. While there, he set national shot put records, was the city’s top in football and basketball and held the national high school shot put and discus record. Following in his older brother, Wallace’s, footsteps, Darrow started college at Texas A&M in 1949. Here, amongst academic success, he developed into a world class athlete. On the football field, he played quarterback, halfback, tight end and place kicker. While his football was very strong, his feats in track and field reached greatness. His career as a shot putter culminated when he represented his country at the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki, Finland. The favorite, he was narrowly beaten and won the silver medal, something that he was deeply humbled by and proud of. In 1953, he was drafted by the New York Giants, but chose not to play and instead focused on his career as a civil engineer. Through all of his athletic achievements, Darrow pursued his other goal of becoming a civil engineer and he was an outstanding student. After graduating from A&M in 1954, he joined the Air Force and became a Second Lieutenant. In his professional career, he worked for Gifford Hill, Texas Testing Laboratories and, in 1977, opened his own company, Hooper Engineering Laboratories. He guided the company with great success for 22 years, until he retired in 1999. He was known as an intelligent, honest and hardworking businessman and garnered much respect in his field. Darrow’s love for his alma mater was evident in the generous gifts he gave to A&M throughout the years. In 1992, he established through a generous gift, the Spencer Buchanan Chair in Civil Engineering to honor his favorite professor. With this endowment, the school was able to appoint Jean-Louis Briaud the professorship, giving prestige to the university’s engineering department. Darrow also established a President’s Endowed Scholarship in the name of his longtime favorite coach, Colonel Frank Anderson. Darrow was passionate about giving back to the people and places that had helped him in his life; he was a firm believer in paying it forward and loved teaching others the skills he acquired throughout his life. To that end, he was elected as a trustee on the DISD School Board from 1991-1992. Darrow’s personal life was as rich as his professional and athletic careers. A proud father of 4, a grandfather to 5 and a devoted husband, he relished in giving his family opportunities to succeed and the freedom to pave their own way in life. He loved to travel, specifically to Estes Park, CO, and Italy, where he enjoyed the solace of the mountains, art, history, and wine. Darrow was respected and loved by many and he will be missed by all who knew him. Darrow is survived by his wife of 50 years, Mary, children Clarence Darrow Jr., David, James and Elizabeth, grandchildren Caitlin, Sam, Meredith, Ava, and Celia.
- North Texas Food Bank
Sunday, August 26, 2018