Gilliam Ray Coats, 79, of Beaufort, passed away on Thursday, June 11, 2020 at his home.
As a USCG Licensed Captain, Ray loved the ocean and had a long career running both charter and commercial fishing boats from the Morehead City waterfront and other points on the East Coast. He was an accomplished and creative boat builder and fisherman.
He loved all animals. He was a good man, though some folks may have affectionately called him peculiar.
He was proud of his son, who himself has become a USCG Licensed Master Captain of bigger and more advanced ocean going vessels and worked at various ports throughout the world including Mexico, The Caribbean, The Gulf of Mexico and Africa.
The family will announce a celebration of Ray’s life, somewhere near salt water, at a later date.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Nancy Coats of the home; son David Christopher Coats of the Philippines; brother, Donald Cobb Coats of Merrimon; niece, Donna Coats Riley of New Bern; nephews, Mike, Ken and Tony Coats of Clayton; and his beloved cat, Abby “Normal”.
He was preceded in death by his parents, James Malcolm and Carra Wallace Coats; sisters, Ida Coats Lewis; Arah Lee Coats; and brother James Bolton Coats and beloved nephew, Al Lewis.
The family requests no flowers. Memorial gifts in Ray’s name can be given to Outerbanks WildLife Shelter (OWLS) 100 Wildlife Way Newport, NC 28570 or online at www.outerbankswildlifeshelter.com or to any local food bank to help others.
Arrangements are by Noe Funeral Service Inc. of Beaufort.
Condolences and life tributes may be sent to the family at www.noefs.org