Birder ‘Bird’ Coffey: May 18, 1936 – March 3, 2020

Birder (Bird) Coffey, a passionate golfer, family man, tomato grower and active community member, passed away at 83 years old, peacefully and surrounded by his family at home in Oak Harbor, Wash. on Tuesday, March 3, 2020, after losing a hard fought battle with an aggressive cancer.

Bird is survived by his wife, MaryAnne, and three children, Selena, Craig and Brian.

Bird was born in Brasstown, N.C., on May 18, 1936 to Hamilton (Ham) and Molly Coffey née Hyatt. He has a surviving sister, Maryjane, and two surviving brothers, June Lee and Fred. He was preceded in death by siblings Zebadiah, James, Dexter, Austin and twins who died at birth.

After high school, Bird enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, with a career serving 22 years. While stationed at Travis AFB, he met his wife and love of his life, Airman 2nd MaryAnne Coffey. They were married March 4, 1961 and made the world their home as they followed Bird’s career and built their family. Their 59th anniversary was on March 4, 2020, one day after his passing.

After retiring from the military in 1977, the family moved to MaryAnne’s hometown of Missoula, Mont. His second career of 13 years was spent working for two car dealerships, Flannigan’s and the Ford dealership, and over a span of 20 years in Montana, he was also a rancher.

In 1999, they moved to his current home in Oak Harbor, Wash., near Naval Air Station Whidbey Island. Over the 20 years of living in this home, Bird planted many varieties of trees on their property, providing a beautiful environment for birds (and humans) to thrive.

If you have an eagle siting or encounter over the next few weeks that gives you a calm and peaceful feeling, you may have had a visit from the Bird man.

Bird’s family and friends will miss him terribly.

In keeping with Bird’s wishes, we will not be holding funeral services. Instead of sending flowers, donations may be made to Whidbey Animals Improvement Foundation at https://waifanimals.org/donate/

If you would like to visit and add to our online Book of Memories for his family and community to enjoy and reminisce – you can visit https://whidbeymemorial.com

More in Obituaries

Gerald Edward Skaare: March 15, 1941 – April 17, 2020

Gerald Edward Skaare (Jerry), of Kennewick, Wash., passed away April 17, 2020… Continue reading

Charlotte Henke: Nov. 20, 1937 – May 15, 2020

Charlotte died peacefully at her home on South Whidbey Island on May… Continue reading

Duane Gimbel: Oct. 26, 1950 – June 26, 2020

Duane Gimbel died at age 69 on June 26, 2020, at home,… Continue reading

Julie D. Mayer: Jan. 25, 1942 – June 21, 2020

Julie Mayer, 78, of Coupeville, Wash., passed away Sunday, June 21, 2020… Continue reading

William ‘Bill’ Rudolph Rainey: April 15, 1944 – June 23, 2020

William “Bill” Rudolph Rainey passed away on June 23, 2020 at the… Continue reading

Ruth Royal: May 28, 1928 – June 17, 2020

Ruth Royal born May 15, 1928 in Seattle, Wash., died peacefully on… Continue reading

Matthew John Zuanich

Matthew John Zuanich died on June 15 in Everett, Wash., six weeks… Continue reading

If George Floyd was white, he would probably be alive

Editor, This is in response to Lisa Root’s letter to the editor.… Continue reading

Linda Marie Crawford Feit: April 12, 1941 – May 10, 2020

Linda Marie Crawford Feit was born at home on her family’s farm… Continue reading

Most Read