Cyclist Killed in Bowie 'Was Stolen From Us'
A funeral for Danielle Cooper, 24, of Bowie, will be held Saturday. The Crofton pet food store where she worked is taking up a collection to help Cooper’s family care for her orphaned animals.
“It’s just shocking. She was stolen from us. It’s just not fair,” said Julia Cahill. The Crunchies Natural Pet Food Store owner’s voice cracked as she recalled spending Labor Day weekend with one of her trusted employees, Danielle Cooper.
“She was just at my house. We just saw her,” said Cahill. “Danielle was never in a bad mood. Everyone misses her. She was taken from us.”
According to a Gazette report, the 24-year-old was riding her bike along MD Route 3 when she was struck by a 2011 Chevy Malibu. Cahill said Cooper was taken to Prince George’s Hospital Center, where she later died.
“We’re all in shock," said Cahill referencing the staff of seven at Crunchies. “We relive it over and over every day when the customers come in here asking, ‘where’s Danielle.’”
Cooper worked at the healthy pet food store for two years. Cahill said Cooper had an affinity for all animals and owned several herself.
“She had a few dogs, several cats. She was always taking in strays,” Cahill said. “Customers would bring them in and say ‘we’ll give them to Danielle.’”
Crunchies Collection for Cooper
Cahill is working with Cooper’s family to make sure they are able to take care of Danielle’s now orphaned pets. A collection jar and display dedicated to Danielle sits on a counter in Cruchies. The staff is taking up a collection to help Cooper’s brother buy food for her pets. The collection will continue for the next month at the store.
“She used to spend nearly $200 a month to feed her pets. Many of them had special needs,” said Cahill. She said some of the animals have food allergies and are on special diets.
Cahill said Cooper recently applied to the Maryland State Police Academy and Prince George’s County Police Department.
SPCA Memorial Donations
Funeral services for Danielle Cooper will be held Saturday afternoon at Beall Funeral Home in Bowie. The funeral home website says memorial donations can be made to the SPCA of Prince George's County.