Shirley Ruthven CoffinJune 20, 1927 ~ February 2, 2017 (age 89)
Pleassant Valley, CT: Shirley Ruthven Read Coffin, age 89, passed away peacefully on Thursday, February 2, 2017, surrounded by loving family members at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital, Torrington, CT. Shirley was born at home on June 20, 1927, to Ida Josephine Horton and Ralston Baker Read in Rehoboth, MA. From an early age she loved music, and became an accomplished pianist and violinist. She attended Gould Academy in Bethel, Maine, and was awarded a full scholarship to Syracuse University, where she received a Bachelor’s degree in music education in 1948.
On June 21, 1947, Shirley married Freeland Arthur Savage of Kingfield, Maine. She taught music education in public schools in New York and Washington State. She was active in the South Congregational Church in Granby, CT, and served as the church organist. She delighted in teaching many Granby children the joys of playing the piano.
Shirley and her second husband, Richard Slater Coffin, were married on July 2, 1966. That same year they moved to Pleasant Valley, CT, where she lived for the rest of her life. She was a First Grade teacher at Barkhamsted Elementary School for 20 years, retiring in June, 1992.
Throughout her life, Shirley traveled extensively around the United States. She was passionate about her flower gardens, needlework, music, and providing a loving home for her family. She often said that the greatest joy of her life was raising her children. She adored her many grandchildren, and she was known far and wide for homemade treats always to be found in her many cookie jars. Shirley loved swiss cheese and pistachio ice cream! She generously volunteered her time to a variety of organizations, including The Licia & Mason Beekley Public Library in New Hartford, CT, and the Winsted Auxiliary for Community Health. Her radiant smile and gentle spirit will be missed by all who knew her.
Shirley was predeceased by her husband, Richard Coffin, her sister, Marcia Read, and her brother, Ralston Read. She leaves behind her four children, Rebecca Savage Bodycoat and her husband George, of Colebrook, CT, Deborah Anne Savage and her partner Jeff, of Escalante, UT, Penelope Savage Ziarnik and her husband Mark, of Hartland, CT, Stuart Russo-Savage and his wife Donna of Montpelier, VT, and her three stepchildren, Jeffrey Coffin and his wife Wendy of Gresham, OR, Suzanne Coffin Carpenter and her husband Kenny of Leesburg, FL, and Nancy Coffin McClurkin and her husband Jim of Carlsbad, CA. She was the grandmother of eleven: Bridget, Rachel, Andrew, Kellye, Abram, Brenda, Stuart, Jimmy, Emma, Delia, and Lily. She also leaves behind many dear friends and neighbors, who meant the world to her.
A memorial service is planned for July of 2017. Contributions in Shirley’s memory may be made to the Winsted Auxiliary for Community Health or the Greenwoods Scholarship Foundation http://www.gsfct.org. To leave an online condolence, please visit www.maloneyfuneral.com.