Naomi June Swopes, the fourth of eight children of Melvin and Goldie Swopes, was born June 1, 1930 in Niotaze, Kansas. June lived the last several years of her life in the home of her eldest granddaughter, Heather Bryant and her husband Randy Bryant, and passed peacefully there at the age of 91 on September 23, 2021 with her family at her side.
The Swopes family moved to Missouri when June was three years old, and she lived the entirety of her life within St. Clair County. She met Neil Coleman in 1946 after he returned from his tour of duty in Alaska. She and Neil married on June 5, 1949 in Lowery City and had two daughters; Phyllis in 1951 and Gayle in 1953. June spent the first years of her married life working on their farm milking cows and raising the girls. Phyllis married James Kenney and they had three daughters, Heather, Nigel and Bathsheba. Gayle married Steve Heitman and they had two sons, Bryce and Ethan. In 1979, June went to work for Witt Printing in El Dorado Springs and retired after working there for more than twenty years. After her retirement, she enjoyed traveling around the country and across the globe with her siblings. She made lifelong friendships with people she met on her travels and kept in touch with an exchange of cards and letters over the years. She stayed young by being engaged in various volunteer activities, from highway cleanup to Hospice caregiver, she shared her vibrant smile and contagious laughter with everyone she met.
Family was the most important thing to June, and she and Neil had their five grandchildren for two weeks each summer. June took her vacation time to spend with the grandkids fishing, picking and selling watermelon, gardening, and taking adventure hikes on their 60-acre farm. The grandchildren were her pride and joy. They grew up, married, and brought even more love and pride to June with nineteen great grandchildren and seven great-great grandchildren. Her nieces and nephews are too many to count, but she loved them and their children as her own and remembered every birthday with a special card and phone call.
A celebration of June and her accomplished life will be held at Sheldon-Goodrich Funeral Home in El Dorado Springs on Wednesday, September 29, 2021 with an open visitation at 10:00 am, followed by a memorial service at 11:00 am.
A woman of strong faith, June was an active member of Pleasant Springs Missionary Baptist Church from the age of 14 and served as the church secretary in recent years, until her health declined, and she was unable to attend regularly. June Coleman will be laid to rest at her church home alongside her true love, Neil Coleman, at the Pleasant Springs Cemetery in Oyer, MO. Neil and June served as caretakers of the grounds for more than 30 years. In lieu of flowers, June has requested donations be made to the cemetery fund to continue their legacy of support to the community. Donations may be made through Sheldon-Goodrich Funeral Home.