Capt. Stephen A. Coakley
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Captain Stephen Anders Coakley, Retired
Stephen Anders Coakley, 87, of Jacksonville, Florida passed away on March 26th, 2020, with his Wife and Family by his side.
Steve grew up in Los Angeles, California. He was the son of the late Claude and Henrietta Coakley, and the younger brother of the late DeAun Naples. Steve graduated from Los Angeles High School, California, before attending the University of Southern California.
After graduating from USC in 1955, Steve served as a Naval Officer for 30 years, flying the A-1 Skyraider and T-28 Trojan. Steve transitioned to helicopters in 1963 which he flew in Vietnam, where he was credited with the rescue of a downed US pilot. The highlight of Steve's flying career was as Command Recovery Pilot for the 1971 Apollo 15 Mission. Steve earned Two Meritorious Service Medals, Two Navy Commendation Medals with Combat Valor, the Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation (Gallantry Cross) Medal with Palm, and the Antarctic Service Medal.
Steve was an avid traveler and enjoyed traveling all over the world with his loving wife he affectionately called Joanie. Steve also enjoyed RVing, hunting, boating, his 1974 Corvette, and spending time with his family.
Steve is survived by his adoring wife of 64 years, Joan (Rubin) Coakley; daughter Ellen Riley and her husband Jeff; son Tim Coakley and his wife Bonnie; four grandsons: Christopher Coakley, Taylor Coakley and wife Brittany, Caleb Riley, and Rhys Riley; and great-grandson, Aiden Rieland.
In lieu of flowers, Steve's family asks that you donate to the Alzheimer's Association ( in honor of Steve's heroic years of battling this disease. Arrangements to follow.
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Published in Florida Times-Union from Mar. 30 to Apr. 1, 2020.
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April 6, 2020
Steve was really the most extraordinary and accomplished man. I'm deeply saddened by his passing. He and Joan were such a fantastic couple. I loved seeing them in San Diego. Seeing them always brought joy to my family. I know my sisters join me in extending our love and condolences to Joan and her children, spouses and grandchildren. We've lost a man of emmense character. Hail and farewell.
Norman III
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