Lolita ‘Lolly’ Brooks Coffin

Coffin Enlarge photo


Durango resident Lolita Brooks Coffin died Wednesday, April 18, 2012, in Durango. She was 93.

Known as “Lolly,” she was born to John and Bettie Chisholm Brooks on Feb. 24, 1919, in Dustin, Okla. She was one of eight children.

After graduating from Dustin High School, she graduated from the Haskell Institute in 1941.

Mrs. Coffin worked in the civil service from 1941 to 1944, serving in Muskogee, Okla., Albuquerque, Chicago and Washington, D.C.

On June 12, 1944, she married Navy Lt. Warner A. Coffin Jr. in Kansas City, Kan. The couple raised their four sons at Haskell Institute, now Haskell Indian Nations University, where Mr. Coffin was a coach and the athletic director for many years. After his death in 1966, Mrs. Coffin worked as an administrator at Haskell until her retirement.

“Lolly was an intrepid and adventurous world traveler, visiting over 48 countries during her lifetime,” her family said. “Her ever-present spirit of curiosity and love of life took her to many exotic places, often with one of her sons. She was up for anything, whether it was cruising the Nile in Egypt, exploring in Tibet or riding a jitney in Bangkok.”

An avid bridge player, Mrs. Coffin played with good friends all her life.

She attended St. Johns the Evangelist Catholic Church in Lawrence, Kan., and St. Columba Catholic Church in Durango.

“Mrs. Coffin moved to Durango in 2002, where she continued her active life and travels throughout the U.S.

“She took her greatest pleasure in the accomplishments of her sons and attended many events with them, from down-home barbecues to elegant art world affairs, to state capitols, to the White House,” her family said. “An avid sports fan, Lolly never missed watching her son Lynn at tennis matches or a Jayhawks basketball game.”

Mrs. Coffin was preceded in death by her husband of 22 years, Warner A. “Tony” Coffin Jr.

She is survived by her sons Lynn Coffin of Durango, Doug Coffin of Abiquiu, N.M., Barry Coffin of Lawrence, Kan., and Tom Coffin of Scottsdale, Ariz.; four grandsons; three great-grandchildren; and one niece and one nephew.

A graveside service will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, April 26, 2012, at Mount Calvary Cemetery, 1605 Oak Hill Ave., in Lawrence, Kan. A celebration of life will be held from 3 to 4:30 p.m. afterward at a location to be determined.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Haskell Alumni Association, 155 Indian Ave., Lawrence, KS 66046.