Lory Cooper

Lory Cooper

  • Lory Cooper, age 26
  • JCC After-School Supervisor and Day Camp Director
  • Granddaughter of Holocaust survivors Simon (z”l) and Bobbie Kohn, founders of Kohn’s Kosher Market
  • Gives to Federation to pay it forward

“Giving back is just part of my family’s story”

Lory’s tradition of involvement and giving with Jewish Federation goes back to her grandparents, Holocaust survivors Bobbie and Simon (z”l) Kohn. As a little girl, Lory heard the stories of how her grandparents made their own journey to freedom, coming to St. Louis in 1949. They arrived at Union Station with no money, no home and no connections—just a desire to make a better, safer, more secure life for their young family. Federation was there to help them relocate and adjust to their new life. “My grandmother still tells the story of how they were met at the station by someone from Federation,” says Lory. “They were given a place to stay, money for their expenses and help finding jobs. She always says, ‘That little bit meant so much.’”

Lory Cooper with her family

Thanks to the assistance Lory’s grandparents received from Federation, they were able to eventually own a home and start a business—Kohn’s Market, still thriving as the longest-standing Kosher meat market and deli in St. Louis. “My grandparents taught us to give what we could and help however we can,” says Lory. “You can see that especially at Passover, when we fill up my grandparents’ house with family, friends, neighbors and anyone who doesn’t have a place to celebrate. We set up tables in all the main rooms and just pack people in. It’s one of my favorite family traditions.”