Helen Louise Coats, beloved wife, mom, grandma and sister passed away peacefully on February 3, 2018 at The Fountains in Kalamazoo, Michigan at the age of 87. She was born to parents Leo and Ruth (Reamer) Miller on July 20, 1930 in North Liberty, Indiana. Helen grew up in Kendallville, Indiana and graduated from high school in 1948. She went on to receive her Bachelor of Science degree from Purdue University in 1952, the 4th generation of her family to do so. Helen became a certified medical technologist and worked in the field of cytology in Lafayette, Indiana. She met future husband John H. Coats while working in Lafayette and they married on August 25, 1957 at Trinity United Methodist Church in Kendallville. In 1959 they relocated to Kalamazoo, Michigan after husband John joined The Upjohn Company.
Helen was passionate about textile arts, especially weaving and quilting. She was an early member of the Kalamazoo Weavers Guild and was also involved in other related organizations in the Kalamazoo Community. But her true calling was caring for her family, in particular, her disabled daughter. Helen was preceded in death by son Brian Stewart and daughter Amy Louise. She is survived by husband John H., son John Christopher (Michael Hand) of Minneapolis, daughter Heather Ann (Jason) Zerban of Portage, grandchildren Ethan and Abigail Dunlop, both of Portage, sisters Barbara Miller of Kendallville, Indiana, and Caroline Bertolino of Downers Grove, Illinois. There will be a Celebration of Life on Friday, February 9th from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. at The Grille Room at The Moors, 7877 Moorsbridge Road, Portage, Michigan. A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, February 10th at 1:00 p.m. at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 1515 Helen Avenue, Portage, Michigan. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a charity of your choice in memory of Helen L. Coats.