Remembering Craig Cotten

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(ABC 6 NEWS) – Local bookstore owner Craig Cotten passed away this week.

His family announced his death Tuesday after an unexpected hospitalization and cancer diagnosis. Craig may be gone, but his family and friends will never forget him.

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"We put the note on the door. It’s from Craig. It’s unreal," Douglas Moore, Craig’s Brother-in-Law said.

Closed until further notice. This is Craig’s last message to his customers here at the Book Review.

The business has been in town for more than 35 years, but at the end of June, Craig was hospitalized with Pneumonia.

He went into septic shock in the Emergency Room and was diagnosed with an aggressive case of leukemia.

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The Book Review, which Cotten staffed by himself is now closed, the future of this business remains uncertain.

"I never bought a comic book, I never bought a sports card, I never bought a dungeons and dragons game, I never bought a Playstation game! It was Uncle Craig. He spoiled my kids rotten," Moore said.

If a building could talk, this one would speak volumes, all because the man who worked inside gave so much to people in this community.

"It’s unreal. The number of people that he encountered, touched. I came here every day, it sucks," Moore said.

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When you turn on a light inside Bryan Boggs’s home, you see many collectibles.

When you look at his shelf, you see books. But it’s so much more than that to Bryan, it’s now a memory of Craig.

"My first year here, Craig was about the only friend I made. Within two visits, he knew my name. Within three visits he was holding stuff aside for me, he’d just go above and beyond," Bryan Boggs, a customer of the Book Review said.

The news of Craig’s passing is tough for Bryan.

"I was out of town a lot this past month, and my next visit was actually scheduled to be today. Life gets away from you. It would have been nice to see him one last time," Boggs said.

"He usually always had a smile on his face, willing to help," Lane Hermanson, a customer of the Book Review said.

Like Bryan and Doug, Lane misses Craig. He’s been a customer at the Book Review since he was in high school.

"He battled cancer several years ago and survived that, so I had my hopes up he was going to win this time too," Hermanson said.

Lane is sad, he misses his friend. The store was his home away from home.

"It’s always been here. It’s just sad to be here, to not be able to come here when the doors are closed and not see Craig," Hermanson said.

Craig’s family is planning a celebration of life for him in the near future. His family also has a GoFund Me page set up.