John Keith Coash, 86 of Albuquerque, NM, passed away on Wednesday, December 25, 2019, of natural causes surrounded by his family. He is survived by his loving wife, Lois, of 66 years; children, Mary Jo Coash Lee (Louie), John Peter Coash (Lori), and James Patrick Coash (Melissa); grandchildren, Claire and Elise Coash, Christopher and Elizabeth Coash, and Benjamin Lee; sister, Francis Kantack; brother, Duane Coash; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Monica Ann Coash; parents, R.F. and Hazel Coash; four brothers, Melvin, Gene, David, and Ron Coash; and one sister, Dorothy Gardner.
John was born on January 13, 1933 in Clifton, KS, and graduated from Clifton High School where he excelled in sports, music, and drama. During his two years in the U.S. Army in the Korean War, he served in the 1st Infantry Division of the Big Red Army stationed in Bamberg, Germany, where he worked as a clerk typist and played basketball for the “26 Spades.” Upon his return to the U.S., he became a proud alum of Kansas State University, always sporting his KSU cap!
The family moved to Albuquerque in 1960. John worked as a civil engineer for the George Rutherford and Summit Construction Co. Some of his most interesting and challenging projects through the years were: Mezzanine of original UNM Pit, Very Large Array at Plains of San Agustin, Sunspot Telescope at Cloudcroft, Albuquerque Academy, First Coronado Center, and the Victor Westfal Korean War Memorial.
John was a family man and a people person. He coached Little League baseball for his sons’ and his daughters’ softball teams, as well as coaching and refereeing AYSO soccer. His sons enjoyed working on cars with him. He took his sons on numerous hunting and fishing trips and helped his daughters with countless home improvement projects. He also was an active church volunteer, sang in several church choirs, and was a long-time member of the ‘Enchanters’, a popular singing group in Albuquerque. He prided himself with remembering first names. He was a good listener and put other people’s needs before his own.
During retirement, John, along with his wife, Lois, enjoyed many travel trips together, visiting several continents. One of John’s favorite trips was playing in a tennis tournament on clay courts in the Czech Republic and winning a trophy. John was an avid listener of classical music, enjoyed playing bridge, wood-working, metal sculpting, tending to his roses, and going to the gym. But his favorite pastime was loving and spending time with his five grandchildren and attending their numerous activities.
John would like to be remembered as a religious, kind, and patient man who deeply loved his family and friends. May he rest in peace.
A Rosary will be recited Friday, January 3, 2020, 9:15 a.m., at Risen Savior Catholic Community, 7701 Wyoming Blvd. NE, with Visitation beginning at 9:00 a.m. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m., with Interment to follow at Gate of Heaven Catholic Cemetery. A Reception will follow the Interment at FRENCH-Wyoming.
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