Cecil H. "Cec" Cole

Born: Thu., May 21, 1936
Died: Mon., May 18, 2015


4:00 PM to 7:00 PM, Tue., May 19, 2015
Location: Cleveland Rd. Location

Funeral Service

11:00 AM Thu., May 21, 2015
Location: Cleveland Rd. Location

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Music by The Piano Brothers

Cecil H. Cole, less than a week away from his 79th birthday, passed away at home in Niles, MI, on Monday May 18, 2015. He was born on May 21, 1936 in Kirksville, MO to Richard and Julia (Karaff) Cole. He married the former Suzanne C. Johnson on June 11, 1960 in Lombard, IL.


Cec received a bachelor’s degree from William Jewel College in Liberty, MO in 1958 where he was inducted into the William Jewel College Basketball Hall of Fame. He served in the U.S. Marine Corp Reserves from 1954-1962 while receiving a master’s degree from Indiana State University in 1961.


A former educator and men’s varsity basketball coach in Danville, IL, Cec took the team to the Illinois “Sweet 16” in 1966, and received his private pilot’s license in 1969 in West Lafayette, IN. In 1974 he coached the West Lafayette Little League baseball team taking them to the Indiana state finals.


Cec had a successful career with State Farm Insurance that started in West Lafayette, IN as an agent, moved to South Bend as a manager, and finished his career in Muncie where he retired in 2001.


All who knew Cec loved him, with his humor and wit amusing family and friends throughout his life. He enjoyed his family, traveling with his wife, and coaching and encouraging his children and grandchildren. He also enjoyed his annual poker gathering with friends, Cardinal games at Busch Stadium, hitting the links, coaching sports teams, and fixing or building anything.


Survivors include his spouse Suzanne Cole, sister Karen Cole of Sonora, CA, son Gregg Cole and spouse Tana of Niles, MI, daughter Jolie Anderson and spouse Kirk of Noblesville, IN, with grandsons Tyler, Graham, and Daniel Anderson, son Douglas Cole and spouse Julie of Portland, OR.


Visitation will be on Wednesday, May 20 from 4:00 – 7:00 pm at Welsheimer Family Funeral Home North, 17033 Cleveland, South Bend, IN. Funeral service will be held on Thursday, May 21, at 11:00 A.M. in the funeral home. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Valley Memorial Park, Granger. Family and friends may leave e-mail condolences at www.welsheimer.com.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (https://www.michaeljfox.org), South Bend Symphony Orchestra (http://www.southbendsymphony.com), or the Snite Museum of Art at Notre Dame (http://sniteartmuseum.nd.edu).


Charitable donations may be made in Cecil's memory to the following organizations:

Snite Museum of Art at Notre Dame

South Bend Symphony Orchestra

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research
P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD, 21741-5014

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Condolence Booklet

Richard and Becky Gates
   Posted Tue May 19, 2015
Getting to know Cec and Suzanne was truly a pleasure. Sec and I were both agents in West Lafayette, IN and both accepted a promotion to the same locale with the same start date and we were off and running. We both built houses and had to commute for 8 plus months. We spent a lot of time together and it was all good!!
I will miss his wry wit and the fun we had.
God only creates so many of this type of great guy and Cec certainly ranked in the upper echelons!!!

RIP my friend!

Peggy Casper
   Posted Wed May 20, 2015
I am so sorry to hear that Mr. Cole passed. Prayers are with you and your family. He will be greatly missed and I am so glad I had the pleasure of meeting him last Thanksgiving at Kathryn and Tyler's.

Chuck Gray
   Posted Wed May 20, 2015
I am sorry to hear about Mr. Cole. I knew him as a teacher, coach and friend. When my dad died he was there for me. When I was having trouble in college he listened to me and gave me advice and encouragement to continue. He was a good teacher, coach and a very kind man. I am sure all his family is proud of him.

Chuck Gray
DHS 1964

Bob & karen Lewis
   Posted Wed May 20, 2015
Suzanne, Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time
Our State Farm time with you and CEC brought many memories back to both of us. WE are very fortunate to have so many State Farm Friends
CEC will be missed but will be not forgotten.

Phil Kemmer
   Posted Wed May 20, 2015
Between the golf games every Saturday for years at the Elks Club in West Lafayette, the card games every month at one of our homes and the Purdue football trips we took with other couples, I had the pleasure of counting Cecil as one of my close friends. We lost contact with each other when he moved to South Bend but Cecil remained with me through all of the wonderful experiences we shared together. He truly was a very dear friend and I will be praying for all the family. Phil Kemmer, 1824 Platte Drive, Lafayette, IN 47905

Susan Hickman
   Posted Wed May 20, 2015
Our sympathy to the Cole family from Susan and Karen Hickman. We are the
nieces of Bob Kay. The last time we saw Cec and Sue was at Bob's funeral.
In 2014, our brother Mike Hickman died of Lewy Body Dementia. Both Karen
and I can remember when Cec lived with our grandmother when he began
teaching in Danville. He was always nice to us and was fun to be around. I know
the Cole family will have many wonderful memories as a remembrance of someone
so dear to all of you.

Gary Nelson
   Posted Thu May 21, 2015

Cec Cole... unforgettable. I turn 65 this year, but have remembered Mr. Cole since I was in 5th grade at Fairchild grade school and since drivers' education a few years later. His was a household name at the Nelson home in Danville (Fred and Marge; and sons Ron, Tom, and Gary). He was the reason Tom chose William Jewel. Dad, mom, and my brothers are gone now, but we were lucky to have known Cecil and he was a positive influence on all our lives. He has been missed for years... please accept condolences in the name of the Nelson family.

Doug Sutton
   Posted Fri May 22, 2015
My wife, Ellie, and I extend our deepest sympathy to the entire Cole family upon Cecil's passing. We knew each other well during your years in West Lafayette, and have especially enduring memories of the great times, especially those coaching Little League Baseball. I've sent word to those members of that 75 Team of whose whereabouts I am aware, and know that they recall those great times very well. His long struggle with Parkinson's is now over, and we must believe that he is now in a better place. Please know that our thoughts are with you.

Doug Sutton
612 Essex Street
West Lafayette, IN 47906-1531

Sam McClung & family
   Posted Mon May 25, 2015
I have missed you Suzanne and your wonderful family ever since moving from West Lafayette many years ago. I have had many Christmas cards returned as undeliverable and hate to reconnect in this way. My best to you and your family. I lost my Carol in 2008 and my kids are scattered - Sam in Tucson, Margaret in Alabama and Rick in Clovis, CA. I have been in California since 1977. We all loved the Coles.

Finetta Edgell
   Posted Tue May 26, 2015
Suzanne, I was so sorry to hear about Cecil. He was truly a special man and we shared a lot of good times and laughs during our State Farm career. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers

Gregg Cole
   Posted Thu June 01, 2017
HI Dad, it's two years to the day since you stopped hanging out with us. The Cards are in first place, but not by much and I think not for long. To expand on my point I made last year, our "souls" are constructed from the very fabric of the universe - and may have existed since the beginning of time. Our brains are just receivers and amplifiers for the proto-consciousness that is intrinsic to the fabric of space-time. So dad when your heart stopped beating, the blood stops flowing, your microtubules lose their quantum state. Your quantum information within the microtubules is not destroyed, it can't be destroyed, it just distributes and dissipates to the universe at large...so you see dad you really are out there somewhere... We are going to the ballgame this Sunday on your birthday, if your quantum self is around St. Louis, we have a seat for you...