PROBE: Nov. 13, 2001

November 13, 2001

AN OBITUARY COLLECTOR — Drexel Cooper died in a long-term care facility on Jan. 7 in La Jolla. He had some kind of muscle disorder. He was 88.

My husband and I belonged to a potluck supper group that included Mr. Cooper and his wife for 30 years. When you eat with people once a month for years, you become close.

He worked for Imperial Stores, rising from entry level to vice president. I have a copy of his obituary. I started clipping obituaries of people I know 25 years ago. I clipped 40 this year. I wrote Mr. Stirling a letter and I sent a copy of the obituary to him. — Old Friend, El Centro

That's the way it is when you get older. Of course, we didn't lose that many friends. We didn't have that many friends.


Apparently, Drexel Cooper had lots of friends. Within four hours after Monday's PROBE hit the streets, we had six calls telling us he had died. None was as complete as the above.

I am still finding whole loaves of bread on La Brucherie Road — big, fat, luscious- looking loaves of bread in the roadway and on the dirt shoulders. Why would anybody throw loaves of bread in the dirt? Why don't they feed these loaves to hungry people? — Crumb Collector, El Centro

How long have you been finding bread scattered on La Brucherie? Two, three, maybe four years? That's how long we've been trying to find out who might be tossing it out — and why. It's starting to drive us crazy.

We called Vons. Again, the people there told us they have no idea who is tossing out bread. The market's bakery makes bread every day and gives the stale bread to a non-profit agency that feeds hungry people. The agency picks up the bread in a closed car.

Then we called Albertson's, where a department manager put us on hold and never came back.

PROBE readers don't know. But the person who tosses the bread knows.

OK, if you're throwing bread in the dirt, call us. We won't tell! Even if they put lighted matches under our fingernails, it will be our secret. Call our voice mail at 337-3448, disguise your voice, don't leave your name but tell us, and tell us why!

If I buy something at a store that gives receipts that say "no cash refunds," can I get my credit card company to take it off my bill? — Dissatisfied, Brawley

We wouldn't bet on it. You certainly can't keep the product and get the charge deducted. It might work if you returned the product for a "credit" and then asked to have the charge deleted from your credit card account.

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