Gene Coatney, 85, surrounded by his family, made his final journey late Monday afternoon, April 11, 2011.
Gene was born on January 16, 1926 in the small town of Custer City, OK, northwest of Weatherford. A veteran of WW II, he was in the 3rd Army which was a part of the Rhineland Campaign leading to the capture of Nazi Berlin. Upon his return he attended Southwestern College in Weatherford, Ok for a short time. He decided to go out into the world with Conoco Oil as a part of their seismograph crew on land. It was with Conoco that this Oklahoma boy was sent to South Louisiana. It was here he caught the first glimpse of his future bride, Barbara Doland, after registering for the Korean War at the Cameron, LA courthouse. It was 'love at first sight,' and they were married 3 months later for 62 years.
Gene liked people and a good conversation was always something he enjoyed. In his younger days, fishing with his boys was a favorite pastime, as well as playing with grandchildren and seeing them drive his lawn tractor for the first time. His last 'play date' in recent days was with his Great Granddaughter, Reagan.
Close relationships were in abundance in Gene's life from neighbors that became dear friends to the Coffee Club, first started in the former Barger's Drug store, whose members became much more than mere acquaintances. The happiness and well-being of family and friends is what mattered most to Gene Coatney. He treasured each family member and friend and, in return, was beloved by many.
He leaves in his absence his loving wife, Barbara Doland Coatney of Lake Charles, one daughter, Sandy Coatney Eldred and son-in-law, Frank of The Woodlands, TX, two sons, David "Davey" Coatney and daughter-in-law, Cheryl of Spring, TX, Richard Coatney and daughter-in-law, Nancy of Lafayette, seven grandchildren Jason, Chloe, Alyson, Lucas, Cameron, Austin, Wyatt and one great-granddaughter, Reagan Leigh Eldred. He is survived also by his two loving sisters, Darlyne Seal of Taloga, OK and Shelah Goyer of Olathe, KS. Many other family members and friends whose lives were touched by that gentle smile will hold dear each memory.
A memorial service will be held at 10:00 AM on Friday, April 15, 2011 in the Johnson Funeral Home Chapel. The Rev. Alan Trouille will officiate. Per Mr. Coatney's wishes, his body was cremated. Visitation will be on Thursday from 4:30 PM until 8:00 PM with a scripture service being held at 6:00 PM. Visitation will continue on Friday from 8:00 AM until time of services.
The family wishes to express their sincere appreciation to Dr. Gaharan and his staff for their compassionate care given during Gene's illness.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the MSU Stream Alumni Center, Box 90775, Lake Charles, LA 70609, the MSU Athletic Foundation, Box 93425, Lake Charles, LA 70609, or to the America Cancer Society, One Lakeshore Dr., Suite 1585, Lake Charles, LA 70629.