Leigh McKee Coffin, 66 years of age, of Beatrice passed away unexpectedly at the Beatrice Community Hospital Wednesday morning, August 29, 2018. He was born on June 2, 1952, graduated from Beatrice High School in 1970, and left Beatrice to attend Michigan State University, where he graduated with his Bachelor of Arts. After graduation he remained in East Lansing to manage The Varsity Inn.
Leigh moved to Florida in 1984 where he worked for Barnett Bank, Savings of America, and 1st NLC as a Loan officer and Mortgage Loan Underwriter. Leigh and Marilyn (Bain) Carpenter were married on September 5, 2003. Once retired, they moved back to Beatrice in August 2013.
Leigh was a huge supporter of the Beatrice Humane Society, where he became involved with fundraising for the new shelter, as well as setting up the Coffin Cat fund to ensure there were monies available for special needs cats requiring surgery and special treatment and was awarded the 2018 Herb and Marian Weston Humanitarian Award. As a member of the Board of Directors of the Gage County Historical Society, he acted as facilitator for the Brick project and the Company C exhibit. He was also President of the Coffin Family Foundation, which supported the Annual Empty Soup Bowls Luncheon, the annual Tallgrass Fiddle Festival at the Homestead, bleachers at Hannibal Park, signage at the House of Orange, Junior Achievement, and Community Players, to name a few. His focus in life was the enrichment of Downtown Beatrice through the Foundation along with his support of Main Street Beatrice.
His hobbies included photography, and road trips to find obscure landmarks so that he could photograph them. He was an avid reader, always seeking knowledge to share with others. The highlight of his life were his trips to Prince Edward Island Canada, where he loved touring around and lending support to local communities there. Leigh will always be remembered for his love of pulling pranks.
He is survived by his wife of 15 years, Marilyn Coffin of Beatrice, 2 stepdaughters, Jillian (Eon) Kotze, and Andrea Carpenter, all of Florida. He was also a loving Grampy to Zoe Johanna Kotze, and adoptive father to his fur babies, Jethro Tull and CC Cecelia. He was predeceased by his father, Lt Col. Leigh F. Coffin, and mother Eva Jane McKee Coffin.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, September 3, 2018 at the First Presbyterian Church in Beatrice with Reverend Doyle Karst officiating with casual dress preferred (especially Husker attire). Interment will take place at a later date following cremation at the Beatrice Cemetery. The body will lie in state from 11-8:00 Sunday at the Griffiths-Hovendick Chapel in Beatrice with the family greeting friends from 2-4:00, and at the church one hour preceding the service on Monday. A memorial has been established to the Beatrice Humane Society and the Gage County Historical Society with the funeral home in charge. Sign Leigh's online guest book and view his video tribute when completed at www.ghchapel.com.
These services have been entrusted to the Griffiths-Hovendick Chapel in Beatrice.