White DoveWhere Caring Is A Family Tradition


Michael Dennis Coats

09/10/1956 - 05/20/2020
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Michael Dennis Coats, age 63, of Omro, passed away peacefully surrounded by his family on May 20, 2020, after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer. Mike was born September 10, 1956, in Oshkosh, the son of the late Lyle and Patricia (Quigley) Coats. Mike was a graduate of Omro High School. He married Debbra Frees on September 14, 1974. He was employed as a union laborer for eight years. Mike worked 30 years for the Omro Schools as a maintenance electrician and retired in 2014. His last and favorite job was working for the eight Fortifi Banks in the area as the Facilities Coordinator and maintenance person. He loved the job and the Fortifi family loved him.

Mike was a jack of all trades and a master of most. He could do roofing, electrical, plumbing, concrete work, woodworking, masonry, tiling, remodeling and the list goes on. Mike would be able to figure out and master just about anything involving a tool. He was a very popular handyman and stayed busy all the time. He enjoyed helping others and was very proud of the fact that he built his daughter’s house from start to finish and restored a 1935 Fordson tractor.

His hobbies included gardening, farming, woodworking, shooting pool, watching westerns and spending time with his huge family.  Mike was a sports lover, and he loved attending the sporting events for all four of his children; they all were three sport athletes! He also helped coach girls’ softball and boy’s baseball while all four kids were in high school. He enjoyed playing softball with his son on various teams, and coed softball with his daughters.

Mike is survived by Debbie, his wife of 45 years. He is further survived by his daughters: Jennifer (Kevin) Lieske, Victoria (Dennis) Larsen, Karen Coats (Erik Bresette); and his son, Matthew (Dannielle) Coats.  He was beyond blessed with thirty-one grandchildren, including stepchildren, biological, adopted and foster children. He is also survived by his siblings: Lyle (Lynn) Coats, Carol (Peter) Stein, and Gary Coats; also, his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: David Houle, Diane (Mike) Weitz, John (Lori) Balistrieri, Lou (Karen) Zwicky, Charles Frees; and his mother-in-law, Gloria Frees. 

He was preceded in death by his parents; his father-in-law, Judd Frees; a brother, Wayne Coats; and sisters, Cindy Houle and Alice (Paul) Traxler.

Mike’s family would like to extend their thanks and appreciation for the compassionate care he received from Dr. Brad Heraly and the staff at the Michael Wachtel Cancer Center and the team from Ascension Hospice. The family would also like to thank the entire Fortifi Bank family for their incredible support during every step of Mike’s illness. 

A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

If you wish please submit online condolences to muellerfh.net

Sherry (Hintz) Mayer wrote on May 24, 2020
Was a neighbor’ and friend of Mike as we grew up in the country (Omro, Wisconsin). My brother (Neil Hintz) and Mike were great friends. My deepest and most sincere condolences for all involved. Was a true blessing to know Mike.

leewmcarole@gmail.com wrote on May 23, 2020
Our heartfelt sympathy to you Debbie, and your family. Remember that there is a link death cannot sever, love and remembrance will last forever.

Michael Esslinger wrote on May 23, 2020
I had the honor and privilege to have worked with Mike for over 15 years and have taught two of his children. If I was having maintenance issues in my classroom, I only needed to mention it to Mike once and it was repaired within a day. When Mike told me he’d take care of something, I never had to ask or remind him again. Mike’s skills often directly affected my ability to educate my students. The roles of the maintenance and janitorial staff are often under appreciated by students, teachers and administrators. And I fear I expressed my thanks to Mike far too few times. I didn’t know Mike outside school, but if the behavior of Karen and Matt in my classroom and on the court were any indication, Mike was a dedicated, involved father, who instilled hard work, loyalty, respect, dedication, and passion in his children. To Mike’s family and friends, I hope all the happy memories will now and forever bring you smiles, laughter, and inspiration.

Jill Ellis wrote on May 22, 2020
By deepest sympathy to entire family. He will be missed by many.