John LaVell “Jack” Coffin

John LaVell “Jack” Coffin

Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Death 4 Sep 2016 (aged 81)
Idaho Falls, Bonneville County, Idaho, USA
Burial West Yellowstone, Gallatin County, Montana, USA
Memorial ID 169358625 · View Source
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After a courageous battle with leukemia, our beloved father, John "Jack" Lavell Coffin, 81, slipped away peacefully with his son by his side on Sept. 4, 2016.

He was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, on April 7, 1935, to Evelyn Mildred Condie and Lavell John Coffin. He is survived by his wife, Sara Jean Warner, and sister, Norma Martin. He leaves behind six children, 20 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren and numerous close relatives.

Jack grew up in Riverside, Calif., and graduated from Riverside Polytechnic (Poly) High in 1953. At 5'10", he was the star basketball player for the Poly Bears.

He married his high school sweetheart and Miss Riverside, Sara Jean Warner, on Sept. 17, 1954, in the Salt Lake Temple while he was attending Brigham Young University. In 1957, he graduated from BYU with a degree in business and soon after moved his new family to San Diego, where he worked as an elementary school teacher. By the early 1960s, Jack and his family of six relocated to Kalispell, Mont., and then to West Yellowstone, where he continued to teach, coach basketball, own a grocery store and raise six children.

As a young boy, Jackie raised pigeons, chickens and rabbits, which he sold to the neighbors. He never had to ask his parents for money, as he was busy devising ways to make his own! He remembers how his mother made fried chicken for the Sunday meal with one of his birds! Grandma Evelyn made the best fried chicken he ever tasted. With a love for all animals, he taught his children how to respect and appreciate nature, too. As an avid outdoorsman, he enjoyed hunting both big game and birds, loved to fly fish and looked forward each year to harvesting huckleberries at Hebgen Lake.

With a love for cats and like a cat with nine lives, nothing much slowed him down, not even his three heart attacks, tumbles off the rooftop, a black widow spider bite or being trampled by a horse on a hunting trip. And when the news came of his cancer in 2013, he faced each phase of the disease as courageously as a lion and lived each day to its fullest. Even then it was hard to keep him in his chair. We all know in our hearts that he hung on this past summer so he could partake in the family reunion given in his honor. For that, we are all thankful.

Jack will always be remembered as a kind and loving, energetic and resourceful man that touched the lives of all. His bright blue eyes and sunny smile will shine on forever.

The family extends their deepest gratitude and appreciation to the staff and community of Lincoln Court in Idaho Falls. The family would also like to express their great appreciation for the kindness, patience and support provided by the Hospice of Eastern Idaho caregivers.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. today, Sept. 9, at the LDS church at 310 Gibbon Ave., in West Yellowstone, Mont. The family will visit with friends one hour prior to the service at the church in West Yellowstone. Interment will be in the Fir Ridge Cemetery in West Yellowstone. Condolences may be sent online at

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  • Created by: Kelly Howell
  • Added: 4 Sep 2016
  • Find A Grave Memorial 169358625
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John LaVell “Jack” Coffin (7 Apr 1935–4 Sep 2016), Find A Grave Memorial no. 169358625, citing Fir Ridge Cemetery, West Yellowstone, Gallatin County, Montana, USA ; Maintained by Kelly Howell (contributor 47798985) .