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‘Losing Cooper’ Helps Families Cope with Grief

Monday, June 29, 2015 @ 12:00 AM

TUPELO, Miss.—J.J. Jasper experienced a loss that no father should—the death of his 5-year-old son, Cooper, in 2009. Today, he shares his experience to help others cope with their grief.

Jasper, the co-host of “J.J. and Ron in the Morning” on American Family Radio (AFR,, a division of American Family Association (AFA,, has authoredLosing Cooper: Finding Hope to Grieve Well”—the moving story of the Jasper family after the tragic death of Cooper.

“Losing Cooper” chronicles the family’s journey through darkness, but offers real hope to anyone experiencing trouble, trials or tragedy, and shows how a strong Christian family deals with shock, loss and grief from a biblical perspective.

“Grieving is Biblical,” Jasper writes in “Losing Cooper.” “But it’s also brutal.”

On July 17, 2009, J.J. and Cooper were having fun on the family’s two-seater go-kart like they had many times before. But on that day, the kart flipped and Cooper’s neck was broken, even though he was strapped in.

In an interview with the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal, Jasper talked about what saved his family after the tragedy.

“A lot of the things we already knew, but boy, we sure have embraced them more—the importance of the local church, the power of prayer—those are lifelines,” J.J. Jasper said. “After we came out of the fog, we realized this experience is something we needed to be good stewards of—that we couldn’t let it wreck us or ruin us or defeat us, that we could see Romans 8:28 come alive: ‘And we know’—we don’t suppose; we don’t hope; we know—‘that all things work together for good for those who love the Lord.’”

Pastor and New York Times best-selling author Max Lucado has said of “Losing Cooper,” “I cannot imagine any person who would not benefit from this inspiring story. We need to know: God turns sorrow into hope. We need to know how God uses tough times to shape our character. The Jasper family is proof. This book is worth your time.”

Jasper also recently wrote the column “I Wasn’t Expecting Special Needs…” just before Father’s Day on the AFA blog site, “The Stand.”

“J.J. and Ron in the Morning,” with co-host Ron Shank, airs weekdays on 200 stations on the AFR network from 6 to 9:30 a.m. (CT). Jasper, a stand-up comedian and keynote speaker, is also the author of “Moses Was A Basketcase” and a children’s book, “When I Grow Up.” His latest comedy DVD is the “I Hope I Break Even Tour.” Jasper and his wife, Melanie, live in Tupelo, Miss., with their four children.

Within months of Cooper’s death, AFA also created the short documentary, “Flame On,” to help reach other bereaved people.

“Losing Cooper” is available for purchase online at the AFA Store (hardback) and on (paperback and Kindle).


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