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    Dorothy Cooper was a child of the Great Depression, one of eight children who went to work in the West Texas cotton fields after their father lost his railroad job.
    Her schooling was sporadic, her life difficult. But Ms. Cooper was a survivor.
    “She viewed her life as having been a hard one, but she was proud of learning to survive without welfare and knowing how to live on nothing,” said psychologist Cynthia Martin Cannici.
    Despite Ms. Cooper’s independence, age and infirmity eventually sent the childless woman, who had outlived five husbands, to a Midland nursing home.
    There, in 1993, the partially paralyzed 65-yearold was raped by a nurse’s aide. She died the next year, one of thousands of people who finish their lives in long term care facilities, unnoticed by the outside world.
    Four years later, she has found a niche in history: Prodded by a lawsuit, the Denton company that owns the nursing home where Ms. Cooper was assaulted has agreed to set up a system named for her that is designed to prevent the hiring of known abusers.

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