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William Joel Cook

William Joel Cook “Bill” 82 of Thornfield Missouri passed away from a long illness October 14th, 2023. He was born September 1, 1941 in Joplin Missouri.

On October 30, 1958, Bill married Nadine Bushong, the love of his life. They would have celebrated their 65th wedding Anniversary in two weeks. They had three children Rebecca, Ben and Bret. Bill moved to Theodosia when he was 11 years old, in 1952, with his family to build a boat dock on a newly formed lake, Bull Shoals. Bill and his father’s dream soon became a reality. All the hard work and worry of those first few years soon turned that little boat dock into the business it is today. “Theodosia Marina Resort, Fort Cook R.V. Park, Cookie’s Restaurant, and Theodosia Marine Sales and Services.” The business is 71 years old and still owned and operated by his family going on five generations. Bill and Nadine also purchased the grocery store in Theodosia which is family operated as well.

Bill’s passion was the outdoors. He loved fishing, hunting, traveling, meeting and talking to new people, farming, family, and he genuinely enjoyed working. He looked forward to seeing people year after year and made many lifelong friends. He enjoyed writing a weekly fishing report for many years that everyone loved to read. He also enjoyed working with the Lion’s Club in Gainesville for many years. He served on many committee boards, including the White River Electric Board for 20 Years. In his later years, Bill enjoyed working at Cookie’s Restaurant so he could visit with all the staff and customers. He truly was a positive influence on everyone he employed and had the chance to visit with.

Bill is survived by his wife Nadine Cook of Thornfield, Missouri. His sister Barbara Wehrman of Kirbyville Missouri. His son Ben Cook and his wife Vikki, His youngest son Bret Cook and wife Melanie, both from Theodosia, Missouri. He is also survived by his grandchildren Desiree and Scott Godbersen of Neosho, Missouri. W.C and Mandy Wilson of Protem, Missouri. Cagney and Mechelle Wilson of Jacksonville; Florida. Mitchell and LaTasha Cook of Thornfield, Missouri. Chase Cook of Rogersville, Missouri. Melissa and Devin Wells Joplin, Missouri. Rebecca and Floyd Clayton of Mountain Grove, Missouri.

Great Grandchildren Kaylin Owens and Kaleb Godbersen. Emma and Ashton Wilson.

Kentlee, Maverik, and Breklyn Cook. Eli Cook. Ethan, Bryce and Evan Clayton. Sarah, Brittany and Molly Wells

Great-great grandchildren Skye Wells and Emma Lane.

Bill was proceeded in death by his parents L.B. and Pauline Cook and daughter Rebecca Wilson.

In lieu of flowers, please support the Scholarship fund set up in Bill’s name at Century Bank of the Ozarks. He was a true believer in empowering the minds of the young and improving their futures.

The family is having a small private burial service, to honor the wishes of Mr. Cook.


Arrangements are under the direction of Clinkingbeard Funeral Home, Gainesville, MO.