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Tuesday, September 26, 2023
1:30 - 3:00pm (Mountain time)
In loving memory of Mr. Bill Cook (William Lorton Cook, Sr.), a remarkable individual whose legacy will forever be woven into the fabric of Howard Lorton Furniture & Design. Born on Mother's Day in 1938, Bill Cook's journey through life was marked by extraordinary dedication, resilience, and a passion for excellence. Today, as we reflect on his life's work and the profound impact he made on our beloved institution, we celebrate the indomitable spirit that guided him through nearly 86 years of life.
The story of Howard Lorton Furniture & Design is a testament to the enduring commitment of the Lorton family. A recent graduate of Stanford's architecture school, Bill Cook returned to Denver at the request of his grandfather, Howard, to join the family business. Little did he know that his journey would take an unexpected turn just one year later when Howard passed away, leaving him as the torchbearer of this storied establishment.
Throughout the years, Bill Cook tirelessly searched the industry to bring the very best in home furnishings to discerning consumers, honoring the legacy of excellence laid down by his forebears. His commitment to providing unparalleled personal service, the cornerstone of Howard Lorton Furniture & Design, was unwavering. As Howard Lorton put it, "Personal service is the foundation upon which we hope to build a lasting and happy relationship between ourselves and those patrons who favor us with the opportunity." These words, engraved on the invitation to Howard Lorton Galleries' opening, remained at the core of Bill Cook's ethos until his final days.
He was an icon in the furniture industry, building partnerships and friendships with leading manufacturers, and was a leader in retail home furnishings. As Jack Glasheen, former president of Hancock & Moore wrote in a letter from 1992, “… this story supports what everyone in the industry thinks about you and your company – that you are an honest, an excellent leader and your company reflects the type of person you are. We are fortunate to have you in the industry.”
His dedication to the business was matched only by his love for his family, and today, we extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife of almost 56 years, Nancy, his daughter Cathy and her husband Brad, his son Will and his wife Margot, and his grandchildren Maggie, Liam, Rebecca and Hannah, along with Brad's sons Noah, Will, Peter and Henry. Bill Cook's legacy lives on not only in the beautiful spaces he created but also in the lives he touched, the relationships he nurtured, and the enduring excellence of Howard Lorton Furniture & Design.
In 2018 he was the inaugural recipient of the Better Business Bureau’s Carrying the Torch award, recognizing his years of dedication to the BBB. He volunteered with the Denver Parks People, where he served as President from 2002-2005. He supported the arts and was thrilled to work with the Denver Art Museum on committee to search for the architect for the recent addition.
Outside of work, Bill was an avid golfer. He could tell you about every game and every hole that he ever played. He also enjoyed hiking, camping, car rallies, and travel. He had many long-time friends and continued his Thursday lunch with a group of men he’d been friends with for years until very recently.
As we bid farewell to a visionary leader, a loving family man, a caring friend, and a true steward of tradition, we remember Mr. Bill Cook with profound gratitude and respect. May his memory continue to inspire us to strive for excellence and uphold the values that have made Howard Lorton Furniture & Design a cherished institution for generations to come.
A Memorial Service will be held on Tuesday, September 26, 2023, at 1:30 PM at Christ Church Denver, located at 2950 South University Boulevard, Denver, CO 80210.