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Army taught Loomis to cook

Lepe Loomis is originally from the American Samoa Islands, but has been in Lawton for many years. She is known far and wide as an excellent cook and she enjoys that distinction.

“I have lived in Lawton since 1993,” Loomis said. “I retired from the Army in 1997 after serving 22 years and six months. I retired as a sergeant first class E-7 and I was a restaurant manager in several military dining facilities. In AIT, they taught us how to become cooks. I didn’t know how to cook American food at first but now I can do it with my eyes closed.”

Loomis also retired from Southwestern Medical Center after working there for 16 years.

“I always liked to cook, even when I was little,” Loomis said. “I had seven brothers and six sisters growing up, so I learned to cook real quick. My father raised pigs and chickens, bananas, pineapples, guavas, mangoes, coconuts and grapefruits. He also had cocoa trees. He had a green hand and kept food on the table.”

Island food includes dishes baked in hot rocks and wrapped in banana leaves.

“We also cooked whole pigs in hot rocks and wrapped those in banana leaves also,” Loomis said. “We took the carcasses to the ocean so that the marine animals could use them.”

“I love to try different recipes and I can cook any dish,” she said. “I really enjoy cooking German food but I can cook international food too.”

Loomis has enjoyed cooking for her husband Louis for the last 28 years. That’s how long they’ve been married. The couple has four children.

“One daughter Lora-Lynn was valedictorian of her high school class and is currently attending UCO in Edmond; our son Joshua is a mechanic and technician; our son Randy graduated from Bible College and is in training to get his real estate license and our daughter Natalia is training to work at DHS. We also have five grandchildren.”

The Lawton Constitution

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