Gilbert “Jack” Coffeen, 88, of Russell, Kansas, died on October 18, 2013, at the Russell Regional Hospital.
Jack was born on May 11, 1925, in Dorrance, Kansas, the son of Frank and Adelia (Weaver) Coffeen. He grew up in the Dorrance area and graduated from Dorrance High School in the class of 1943. He joined the United States Navy and served on the USS Abner Read during World War II in the southwest Pacific. He was one of the men who survived a Kamikaze attack that ended up sinking the destroyer. After the war, he met, fell in love and was united in marriage to Irene Hardt on October 14, 1956 in Dorrance. From this union they were blessed with two children, a son Wesley and daughter Gail. Jack worked in the oilfields and oilfield supply industry working with Buckeye Supply for many years and retired in 1990. He was a life member of the V.F.W. Post #6240, charter member with the Dorrance American Legion, life member of the D.A.V. and Russell Historical Society. He enjoyed watching and reading information on world history, woodworking, machine repair, tinkering with engines and motors and was a jack of all trades. Jack and Irene loved the outdoors, traveling, being involved in scouting and attending dances together. Most of all he enjoyed spending time with his family, especially his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
He is survived by his wife Irene of the home, daughter Gail Downing and husband Robert of Russell; grandchildren Mary Chance and Daniel Downing and wife Cassandra; great grandchildren Oriana Parsons, William Chance, Eva and Zoey Downing.
He was preceded in death by his parents, son Wesley Coffeen, 4 brothers and 6 sisters.
A graveside service to celebrate Jack’s life will be held at 10:30 A.M. on Tuesday, October 22, 2013, at the Dorrance City Cemetery in Dorrance, Kansas with Pastor Roger Dennis officiating. The Russell V.F.W. Post #6240 Honor Guard will perform the military rites after the graveside service. Visitation will be from 9 A.M. to 8 P.M. on Monday, October 21, 2013, at the mortuary with family present to greet guests from 6 P.M. to 7 P.M. Monday evening at the mortuary. Memorials may be given to the V.F.W. Post #6240 or the Dorrance American Legion and can be sent in care of the mortuary. Pohlman -Varner-Peeler Mortuary of Russell is in charge of the funeral service arrangements.