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Summerfield - Joseph Byrnes Coleman, Jr., 71, of Summerfield, Florida passed away September 19, 2013 at his home, surrounded by his family. He was born on February 6, 1942 in Neptune Township, New Jersey to Joseph and Ruth (Throckmorton) Coleman, Sr.
As the great grandson of Horse Racing Hall of Fame inductee, thoroughbred horse trainer Matthew Byrnes, Joseph "Joe" Coleman, Jr. moved from New Jersey to West Palm Beach at a very early age. Growing up in South Florida, Joe was a surfer and talented trick water skier. He received his first boat at a young age, and as a result would carry a love and passion for the ocean and all things that lived in it for the rest of his life. As an avid fisherman, Joe spent many a weekend trolling the high seas in search of the biggest game fish the Atlantic had to offer. Building tight bonds with his close friends and fishing buddies, Joe also taught his son a similar passion, which he carries with him today. He loved music over movies and an old Ford van he thought was family. He loved to grill and smoke just about anything, and the longer it took the better. Enlisting in the Navy in 1965, Joe served aboard the USS Forrestal CVA-59 Rank IC3 with over six years of service to our country. Like his father and father's father, Joe was a Journeyman Electrician with over 42 proud years of service to IBEW Local 323. Joe moved to Summerfield from Palm Beach Gardens in 1997.
One of Joe's greatest accomplishments in life was his family. While sharing 48 years of marriage with his wife Rita, Joe also had two award-winning children. His first, Lori, is the love-light and rock of the Coleman family. Lori was an avid participant in Special Olympics, with many gold medals to prove it. In 1986, she went to the International Special Olympic Games where she brought home two Bronze Medals for wheelchair racing. His son, Joe the III, received his Eagle Scout medal in 1988. In 1993 after receiving his degree in Film Production, he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in the entertainment industry. In 2010, he received an Emmy Award for ABC's "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution", and later that same year a TV Honors Award for the same show.
Joe is survived by his wife Rita J. Coleman, Summerfield, FL; daughter, Lori Ann Coleman, Summerfield, FL; son, Joseph Byrnes Coleman, III and his wife, Sarah of Woodland Hills, CA; grandson, Bodee James Coleman Woodland Hills, CA; and his sister and brother-in-law, Diane (Bill) Bigbee, Jacksonville, FL.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Joseph, Sr. and Ruth.
The family will receive friends at Hiers-Baxley Funeral Services - The Villages, FL on Tuesday, October 8, 2013 from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. with a prayer service at 6:00 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at St. Theresa Catholic Church on Wednesday, October 9, 2013 at 9:30 a.m. Interment will be at Florida National Cemetery at 11:30 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of Marion County, 3231 S.W. 34th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34474. Sentiments may be left at:
Funeral Home
Hiers-Baxley Funeral Services, The Villages
1511 Buenos Aires Blvd
The Villages, FL 32159
(352) 753-8353
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Published in Ocala Star-Banner from Oct. 6 to Oct. 7, 2013
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