Marla Ferguson Cooper, of Pima, passed away April 11, 2023, surrounded by her family.
She was born to the late John and Loveda Ferguson, on January 7, 1953. Marla was raised in Central with her siblings Johnie, Michelle, Kenneth and Rhonda. She developed a love for horses at a very young age. Marla would often say that she learned to ride before she could walk.
Marla graduated from Thatcher High School. She did not enjoy being a student, however, she loved the friends she attended school with. Marla married Danny Traylor in 1971, together they have two children; Ty and Timalee. Marla was a devoted mother. She was given many opportunities to pursue her passion and talents professionally but chose to stay at home to raise her children. Marla’s love for horses continued throughout her life and she became an accomplished horseman. For many years she was the Coca Cola Cowgirl at the Gila Valley PRCA rodeo. Later, she worked on several large ranches in Colorado and Arizona. She was a horse wrangler for the films Tombstone and Lightning Jack.
Marla had a profound respect for the earth, the beauty of nature and animals. She spent much of her life rescuing animals and often people in need. She was happiest when she was outside working on her land. Marla was compassionate, honest, hard working and deeply spiritual. She found joy and peace serving in the Gila Valley Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Marla loved her family fiercely. She is survived by: her children, Ty Traylor (Kelsey) of Pima; and Timalee Lightfoot (Corey) of Florida; grandchildren, Lane, Dustin, Logan, Jace, Emma; and great-grandchild, Aiden; as well as her siblings, nieces, nephews, Aunts, Betty and Carolyn, Uncle Gale and many wonderful friends. We will miss her strong will, sense of humor and protecting love.
Memorial services for Marla will be conducted Saturday, April 15, 2023, at 12:00 p.m. (noon), at the Pima Chapel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Bishop Jared Ray of the Pima First Ward.
In lieu of flowers, we would love if you would share a memory or story of Marla.