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Helen R. Coakley


CROGHAN — Helen R. Coakley, 93, of Croghan, died on Saturday, March 19, 2011, at the Lewis County Residential Healthcare Facility, Lowville, where she had resided since April, 2010.

She was born October 16, 1917, in Croghan, N.Y., daughter of James and Alice Keiffer Zehr. Helen was a 1936 graduate of Father Leo Memorial School in Croghan, and worked for New York Telephone Company in Croghan, Old Forge and Watertown.

On May 1, 1941, she married Kenneth Rauhe of Naumburg at St. Stephen's Rectory in Croghan, with the Rev. Amadeus Burke officiating. Mr. Rauhe passed away on June 8, 1944. On October 20, 1956, she married Caleb (Joseph) Coakley of the Bronx. She and Mr. Coakley lived in Bayside, N.Y., where Mr. Coakley died on January 27, 2001. In August of that year Helen moved back to Croghan where she was a communicant at St. Stephen's Church and a member of its Rosary Society.

Mrs. Coakley was a homemaker and she enjoyed traveling.

She is survived by her sister and caregiver, Venetha Houppert, of Croghan; a brother, Ronald Zehr, a resident of the Lewis Co. Residential Healthcare Facility and formerly of Carthage; a step-son, Robert Coakley, and his wife, Drucilla; a step-grandson, Brad Coakley, and his wife, Ann and their two children; a step-granddaughter, Brigid Annis and her husband, Mark and their two children, all of New Jersey, and several nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by three brothers, Guy, Willard, and Sherman Zehr, and a sister, Margaret Thomas.

Her funeral will be held on Monday, beginning with a 9:45 a.m. prayer service at the Scanlon Funeral Home, 9791 Main St., Croghan, followed by a 10:30 a.m. funeral Mass from St. Stephen's Church with the Rev. Daniel L. Chapin, pastor, officiating.

Calling hours will be on Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m. at the funeral home. Burial will be in Naumburg Apostolic Christian Church Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be made to St. Stephen's Memorial Fund, c/o St. Stephen's Church, P.O. Box 38, Croghan, NY 13327.

To view online obituary or to leave a message of sympathy, please visit

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