November 8, 1923 – September 4, 2020
Francis Dale Coats, 96, of Huron, formerly of Doland, died on Friday, September 4, 2020, in the Avantara Care Center.
Funeral services were held Wednesday, September 9, 2020, in the Doland Methodist Church in Doland.
Francis Coats was born in Doland on November 8, 1923, to Ernest and Veronica (Paris) Coats. He was the youngest of 6 boys and a girl. He attended Capitola Township School, one of only three students in his class.
While in school, Francis met his bride-to-be (the only girl in his class), Gleo Roberts. They were married in the Spink County Courthouse in Redfield on February 22, 1945. To pay for the wedding, Francis took his car to Huron on a trailer to sell it. It also paid for their honeymoon. Francis and Gleo spent the first years of marriage living near Miller on the family farm. In the fall of 1948, they purchased a farm southwest of Doland.
Francis was a bus driver for 12 years, retiring in 1962. He also worked at the hardware store in Doland, for DeKalb Seed Company – winning many awards during his tenure, at Hiles Construction as a road grader, and for 10 years as a rural mail carrier. He was a member of the Doland Township Board for many years as well as a Doland School Board member.
Survivors include his daughter, Cheri Martian; daughter-in-law, Jane Coats; grandkids James (Lisa) Coats, Shelley Coats, John (Susan) Coats, Erin Coats, Jennifer Coats, Josh (Bailey) Coats, Dale (Lin) Martian, Carla (Tatum) Sandquist, Kathy (John) Roggow, Peggy (Craig) Valnes; 18 great-grandchildren; and 5 great-great-grandchildren. Preceding him in death were his
Preceding him in death were his parents; his wife, Gleo; son, Jim Coats; son-in-law, Richard Martian; and siblings Les, Bill, Merle, Howard, Sid, Shorty, and Norma.
Services are complete with the Furness Funeral Home in Clark.
(Cheri Martian’s address is 26123 128th St., Trail City, SD 57657.)