Helen A. Cosper

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Helen (Marmion) Cosper was born March 14, 1921 in Paris, France of French parents. Helen was the only child of the Marmions. Her mother was an actress and opera singer. Her father was an artist-designer. The Marmions came to the U.S.A. via Canada before she was three years of age. They settled down near Chicago. There, Helen made her stage debut in legitimate theatre in a French melodrama "Au Telephone" at the Goodman Theatre. Shortly thereafter, the family went to Hollywood, CA where they found work in films and "dubbed" in French American films for export to French speaking countries. Helen and family returned to France where there was more work to be done. There Helen began her formal ballet training under Lucienne Lamballe, then prima-ballerina at the Paris Opera, renown for her technique. After obtaining more tutelage Helen remained in France. By 1946 Helen had toured Belgium, Portugal, Italy, Switzerland and also toured North Africa with a well-known dance partner. In 1948, she and her family left Europe. In subsequent years following, Helen taught ballet in various cities. After her father's death, Helen and her mother arrived in Oklahoma in 1953. Mother and daughter became citizens of the United States Sept. 14, 1955. From 1953 to 1966, Helen started up the "Chickasha School of Dance." There the groundwork began. She taught numerous children including Jane Brooks School for the deaf. Helen taught many styles of dance throughout her career: Ballet, Pointe, Ball Room dance, Tap. She also took many of her aspiring students to Cecchetti Council of America workshops and exams. She trained many children during those 13 years. Out of love and respect for their dance instructor she was fondly known as "Miss Helen." Helen taught dance at OCW, now known as USAO in the mid-60's. On June 5, 1965 Helen married her love, Charles Cosper, Jr. at Holy Name Catholic Church. In 1967, she and her husband Charles Cosper moved from Chickasha to Michigan where he had an excellent job offer. Helen continued her career in ballet. In 1992 "Miss Helen" and her husband returned to Chickasha to retire. Helen briefly re-opened the "Chickasha School of Dance." In 2004 "Miss Helen" suffered a mild stroke, and soon after was diagnosed with "Alzheimer's." With the prognosis the school closed. After several years of weakened health, she spent her days at home with her husband. Due to much needed nursing care, "Miss Helen" spent her final days at Shanoan Springs Nursing Home. Helen Ann (Marmion) Cosper departed on Jan. 5, 2014. Her husband, Charles was blessed with many wonderful moments in their almost 50 years of marriage. He was the shining star in her life. There will be no services. Viewing will be Thursday, Jan. 9, 2014, at McRay Funeral Home from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with cremation following. Arrangements are under the direction of McRay Funeral Home.