Van Cook

Published 4:55 pm Monday, July 20, 2020

Van Cook


Van Cook, 74, died Friday, July 17, 2020 in Danville, Kentucky. Born March 14, 1946 to the late Merle Trimble and Juanita Kidd Cook, he was a graduate of Danville High School and University of Kentucky. 

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After college, he moved to Florida where he worked for NASA as a design engineer during the height of space programs. In 1975, he returned to Danville to start his own business in development and construction. 

He left construction after being appointed Commissioner of Housing in 2004, after his tenure as commissioner, he returned to construction in 2008 and worked until an accident in 2016. Throughout his career, he was a member and past president of both KY Homebuilders Association and Bluegrass Homebuilders Association, a member of Kentucky Board of Housing, a life Spike and national director of National Homebuilders Association, and served on the board of Associated General Contractors Self-Insurance Fund. 

He also worked on many projects around the Danville area, including the development of Bluegrass Estates. Van served twenty years on the Selective Service Board, and Chairman and Vice President of Boyle County Fireboard for fourteen years. He was a licensed Pilot and loved airplanes and flying. Van also had a lot of animals and could be seen driving around town with his beloved dogs. 

He is predeceased by his parents, and sister, Valinda Cook Williams.

He is survived by his wife of nearly twenty-one years, Edna Brent Cook; his son, Ashley (Starlene) Cook of Greensboro, North Carolina; grandchildren, Vesper, Aldrin, Aurora, and Waverly; nephews, Adam (Laura) Petrey of Brookfield, Wisc.; niece, Donna Sterling of Austin, Texas; sister-in-law, Betty (Jack) Massalsky; brother-in-law, Kenneth Brent; and several cousins he was very fond of.

Visitation will be held 5pm to 8 pm, Thursday, July 23, 2020, at Stith Funeral Home in Danville. A burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations are suggested to the Danville-Boyle Co. Humane Society. The online guestbook and Hugs From Home can be found at