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COATS – John DeQuincey

December 9, 1925 – December 21, 2010

John DeQuincey Coats, beloved husband of Audrey of Calgary, passed away on Tuesday, December 21, 2010 at the age of 85 years.

John was born on December 9, 1925 in Winnipeg, Manitoba into a loving home. He joined the Air Force at 17 1/2 and took his Navigator’s training in Canada, then served in England with the RCAF and the RAF for the duration of the war, and was promoted to the rank of Flying Officer. While training in Calgary, he met the love of his life, Audrey Hooper, and they were married in 1951. John visited many communities in northern Alberta with the Canadian Forestry Association to spread the message of conservation. He served the Calgary Board of Education for thirty-three years as a teacher, principal and staffing officer. He loved interviewing and hiring new young teachers, and became a caring and wise mentor to many during their teaching careers.

John is survived by his beloved wife, Audrey, with whom he shared fifty-nine wonderful years; son Doug (Pat); daughter Amy (Chuck) Dunbar; grandchildren, Jennifer, Christy, Michael, David, and Stephen; great-grandchildren, Hannah, Emma, Noah, and Ava; brother Jim (Mary); sister Marjorie (John) Lawrence; and numerous nieces, nephews and in-laws. He was predeceased by his parents, Douglas and Amy; and sister Dorothy Coats.

A Celebration of John’s Life will be held at McINNIS & HOLLOWAY’S, Chapel of the Bells (2720 Centre Street North) on Wednesday, December 29, 2010 at 2:00 p.m. Condolences may be forwarded through If friends so desire, memorial tributes may be made directly to the charity of the donor’s choice.

In living memory of John Coats, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES, Chapel of the Bells, 2720 CENTRE STREET NORTH Telephone: (403) 276-2296.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Maureen & Greg Ramage :

    Dear Audrey and Families:
    We had prayed for John last Sunday at Central and now to read today of his passing, we send yous our deepest sympathy and prayers, he was such a kind gentleman. He is now celebrating the delights of heaven and having Christmas dinner with Jesus.
    Your Central Friends, Maureen and Greg Ramage and their families

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  2. Dear Audrey, I was saddened to hear via Garfield Anderson than John had passed away. John was a gentleman in every sense and hundreds of teachers benefitted from his care and guidance, both when he was a principal and when he headed the staffing department. I remember that when he was placing a teacher he always looked not only at their credentials to ensure the strengths of a teacher met the needs of a school but also, if the teacher did not drive, he checked the bus routes to determine if they were convenient for the teacher. He was indeed a kind and thoughtful person.
    Audrey, I remember how well you looked after Cameron when he and Douglas were little and how much it meant to Phil and myself having you as the caregiver during the day when I was teaching at Currie School.
    Losing John, after 59 happy years together, will leave such a void in your life, Audrey. I hope that after a while when some of the emptiness leaves that memories of those wonderful years will then help you cope.
    It is at times like this that, much as I love living in Comox here on Vancouver Island, I miss being with my friends in Calgary.
    With kindest thoughts of you and your family, Audrey,
    Sincerely, Marj Klem

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  3. Condolences to Doug Coates on the occasion of the death of his father, John DeQuincy Coates.

    There is never a life without sadness,
    There is never a heart free from pain;
    If one seeks in this world for true solace,
    He seeks it forever in vain.

    So when to your heart comes the sorrow
    Of losing some dear one you’ve known;
    Tis the touch of God’s sickle at harvest,
    Since He reaps in the fields He has sown.

    I don’t know who wrote the poem, Doug, but I might add that no matter how old your parents might be when any one of them should die, you will always feel sad, and you will miss them very much. You have my sympathies for your feelings during this very trying time for you.

    God Bless you and your loved ones!
    Stan Humenuk

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  4. Elizabeth and John Hogan :

    To Audrey and family
    Our deepest sympathy on your loss. John was a very special person, and extremely kind to us, and we mourn his passing. You will be in our prayers.

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  5. Ross and Helen Davidson :

    Audrey and Family
    We are praying for you. John will be missed.
    “The Lord’s loving kindnesses indeed never cease; for His compassions never fail. They are new every monring; great is Thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23”
    Best wishes
    Ross and Helen

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    Dear Audrey: I was so sorry to hear of John’s passing today. He was truly one of Nature’s gentlemen.
    Sincerely, STEPH.

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  7. Mariellen Henriksen :

    Dear Audrey,

    Mr Coats has always been a treasured memory of my days at Cambrian Heights Elementary so many years ago. He was a kind, fair and well loved Principal and I still remember an art project he inspired during Social Studies.

    Knowing him these past years at Central has been an added bonus – he was every bit as special as my memories of him.

    I am so sorry to hear that he is gone – he was a possitive influence to so many people.

    Mariellen Henriksen

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  8. Robert E. Norton :

    My sympathy is extended to your family from a retired school teacher of elementary and junior high with the Calgary Board of Education.

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  9. Dear Audrey and Family:
    It is with sincere sadness that I express my sympathy to you and your family in the loss of your beloved John. His contributions to the Calgary Board were many and he certainly was respected and treasured by us all. May the many wonderful memories of John help sustain you in the days ahead.
    Sincerely Ralph Hodgins

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  10. Holly Heffernan (Kyle) :

    Amy and Family,
    I was saddened to hear of your dads passing. Please know that you and your family are in my prayers and thoughts at this sad time.
    Love Holly Heffernan

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  11. Alvin & Jodi Effa :

    Alvin and Jodi Effa extend our condolences to Audrey and family on the passing away of John. I have many fond memories of working together with John at the CBE.

    Alvin Effa

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  12. David and Lisa Anderson :

    Audrey and Family

    John was as kind a person as we have ever met. A true Gentleman. He will be missed and his memory charished.

    Our hearts go out to you.

    David and Lisa Anderson

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  13. Wendy and Dan McDougall :

    Audrey and Family,

    We are sorry for your loss. John was a very fine man who will be greatly missed.

    Dan and Wendy

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  14. Marshall & Evelyn Bye :

    Dear Audrey: Sorry I was unable to attend the Celebration of John’s life. It is with fond memories that I remember John and the years we worked together. John will be dearly missed by myself and many more. I do hope you are able to still enjoy life (health wise). I know you’ll keep John in your heart–as we all will have a niche for him.
    Fondly, Marshall & Evelyn.

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  15. I met John Coats in 1966 when I taught at Sarcee School. John completed my evaluation so that I received my teaching certification in Alberta. In 1983 when I was returning to teaching, John found me a position in the ESL area. John was a kind, considerate gentleman and I am forever grateful for his assistance in my teaching career.

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