Cooper Lee is the younger brother of Deb Lee and the maternal uncle of Nathan Scott. Confident and charming, he often clashed with his former brother-in-law, Dan Scott. While visiting Tree Hill in season three, Cooper began a relationship with high school student Rachel Gatina, but he broke up with her upon learning the truth of her age. As a result of his decision to end their relationship, Rachel confronted him at Nathan and Haley's wedding. The confrontation would eventually escalate to the point of Rachel driving off with Cooper in the wedding limousine and running off the Molina Bridge. Upon his recovery, Cooper left Tree Hill for good after refusing to forgive Rachel for faking a pregnancy.
In season two, Cooper is first seen arriving at his nephews's apartment. Cooper's sister, Deb Lee, had told him about Nathan's recent split from Haley James Scott. Once Cooper arrives, he makes comments about Nathan's relationship with Haley about how she must be blind or that Nathan's "gear" isn't that great. Cooper invites Nathan to go to a race car track to which Nathan brings along Lucas. At the track, Nathan starts to go at a dangerously high speed whilst thinking of his memories of Haley and how it went downhill. Nathan crashes into the wall in a suicide attempt which he later survives, and Cooper feels responsible.
Cooper makes his return to Nathan and Haley's apartment and reveals that he is going out with a young model. Mouth is heartbroken over Rachel turning him down and saying he's too good for her. He arrives at her house with flowers and realizes she's with another man, which turns out to be Cooper. Mouth doesn't have a clue who Cooper is until he's walking with Brooke, points out Cooper and tells her that is who Rachel has been with. Brooke, having known Nathan all her life, recognizes him instantly. At a Raven's basketball game, Rachel is cheering until she spots Cooper in the crowd and slowly backs away. However, once Nathan scores the winning basket, Cooper is shown clapping and sees Rachel in her cheerleading uniform. Cooper ends the relationship because of the age difference. Rachel later manages to seduce him by stripping down to her underwear and the two have sex despite Cooper knowing the truth about her age. At Nathan and Haley's wedding, Rachel gets drunk and makes a toast about Cooper. He follows her out the door and she takes the limo that was supposed to be for Nathan and Haley's wedding. Whilst driving, Rachel persuades Cooper to be with her and he refuses each time. Rachel is driving recklessly and Cooper takes the wheel in an effort to steer. To get his attention, Rachel reveals that she is pregnant. Cooper is in shock and Rachel takes control of the wheel. Nathan and Haley ended up taking another car to the airport and happened to be passing by when the two lose control and the limo goes over the Molina Bridge. The finale of Season 3 ends with Nathan diving in the water to save them and Haley screaming in fear.
After the accident, Rachel wakes up and goes to talk to Cooper, who received more serious injuries than her. When she enters his room, he asks if the baby is okay. Rachel reveals she lied about being pregnant and an angry Cooper says he doesn't want anything to do with her. He then leaves Tree Hill.
- Rachel Gatina
- Start Up: Before "I Slept With Someone In Fall Out Boy And All I Got Was This Stupid Song Written About Me" (3x19)
- Break Up: "Everyday Is A Sunday Evening" (3x20)
- Reason: Cooper learned Rachel was still in High School.