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John Trotter Coker Jr.

Staff Writer
The Shawnee News-Star

John Trotter Coker Jr., 98, passed away on Dec. 31, 2019, in Shawnee, Oklahoma.

Preceding him in death are: his parents, John Trotter Coker and Mary Folks Coker; his wife of

64 years, Nellie Jo Hightower Coker; daughter, Virginia Lee Evans; brothers Orba, Olen, Doyle,

and Quinton; and sister Mary Beth Richardson.

He is survived by his sons, Steven Boyce Coker, MD, and wife Peggy of Batavia, Illinois; John Trotter Coker, III, and wife Noella of Pawnee, Oklahoma; Joe Keith Coker of Midwest City, Oklahoma; and Bruce Alan Coker and wife Christine, of Shawnee. He is also survived by seven grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren, and his sister Ramona Savage, and brothers Frank, Bill, and Jack.

John was born on Sept. 12, 1921, in El Reno, Oklahoma, to John Trotter Coker and Mary (Folks) Coker.

While in the U.S. Army Air Corp, he married Nellie Jo Hightower on Nov. 18, 1941, in Purcell, Oklahoma.

During WWII he served in the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign in the 13th Troop Carrier Squadron stationed at New Caledonia. He flew multiple missions to Guadalcanal and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, three Air Medals, and various other medals, citations, and awards. After the war, he reenlisted in the Air Force and participated in the Berlin air lift and served on posts on all the continents except Antarctica. Retiring after 20 years of service in the U.S. Air Force as a fight checker, he began a second career in quality control at Tinker Air Force Base, serving 20 more years. He also sold real estate part time in Midwest City.

John was very proud that all five of his children obtained bachelor’s degrees. He enjoyed

hunting and fishing. He loved to garden and hated gophers. In his later years he gardened, raised

rabbits and chickens, and shepherded his daughter-in-law’s goat herd. Above all, he was loved

and will be greatly missed.

Visitation will be from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., Friday, Jan. 3.

Service will be 11 a.m., Friday, Jan. 3, at Cooper Funeral Home Chapel with Pastor John Trotter Coker, III officiating. Private Burial will follow at Hillside Cemetery in Purcell, Oklahoma, under the direction of Cooper Funeral Home of Tecumseh.

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