JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – A celebration of life for the late LaRita Cooper-Stokes was held on Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church in Jackson.

“I stand before you today with a heavy heart in tribute to a lady that wore many hats, and she wore them well, and she wore them proudly,” said former Jackson Police Chief James Davis.

Family, friends and members of the community traveled from near and far to pay their respects to Hinds County Judge Cooper-Stokes. They said she was a remarkable trailblazer and a passionate community servant.

“I want anybody to know that this is a great day in terms of celebrating her homegoing to celebrate, you know, who she’s with now. She was a believer. There’s no doubt about that, and we as believers, we understand that there’s something on the other side,” said Dr. Leon Bracey, a family member.

Cooper-Stokes graduated from Lanier High School before earning her bachelor’s degree in political science at Jackson State University (JSU). She also attended the Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University.

Cooper-Stokes leaves behind her husband, Jackson City Councilman Kenneth Stokes, and their three children. They find comfort in knowing that she lived a life full of purpose.

Hinds County Sheriff Tyree Jones said, “She’s gone on to a better place. But what better way to honor the woman and continuing her legacy by continuing to carry out some of the same values that she exemplified on a day-to-day basis?”

Cooper-Stokes served on the Jackson City Council from 2012 to 2014. She would have celebrated her 65th birthday on Saturday, May 27.