School 17

Richard James Cook

February 3, 1943 ~ January 23, 2022 (age 78)


Richard James Cook, 78, of Austin, Minnesota, died suddenly from a heart attack on Sunday, January 23, 2022. 


Richard was born on February 3, 1943, in Spring Valley, Minnesota to Edward and Myrtle Cook.  He graduated from St. Mary’s College in 1965 and subsequently received his Master of Science Degree in Education from Winona State College in 1972. He came to Austin in 1967 and started teaching History at Queen of Angels Catholic School. In 1971, he became Principal and continued in that role for Austin Area Catholic Schools until he retired in 2005. 


On October 5, 1968, he married Cecilia Ruekert at the Parish of St. Mary in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Together they raised four children: Reverend Monsignor Thomas Cook, Joan (Tyler) Farrell, David (Becky) Cook, and Daniel (Erika) Cook.


Richard is survived by his children; grandchildren, Holden, Clare, Linus, Kate, Bennett, and Brady; brother, Gerald (Ann) Cook; and several nieces, nephews, and in-laws. He is preceded in death by his wife, parents, and brother Eugene (Adonna) Cook.


A visitation will be held on Sunday, January 30, at Mayer Funeral Home in Austin from 1:00 PM until 4:00 PM.


A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Monday, January 31, at 10:30 AM at Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Austin. Interment will be in Calvary Cemetery. 


Masks will be required at both the visitation and the Funeral Mass. 


In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in remembrance of Richard to Catholic Charities of Southern Minnesota:


111 Market St, Suite 2

PO Box 379 

Winona, MN 55987


            Condolences may be left online at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Richard James Cook, please visit our floral store.


January 30, 2022

1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Mayer Funeral Home
600 2nd Street NW
Austin, MN 55912

Funeral Mass
January 31, 2022

10:30 AM
Queen of Angels Catholic Church
1001 Oakland Avenue East
Austin, MN 55912

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