Cover photo for Frank Wilbert Coil's Obituary
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1924 Frank 2022

Frank Wilbert Coil

May 19, 1924 — January 25, 2022

Frank Wilbert Coil passed away on Tuesday, January 25, 2022, in Bozeman, Montana. He was born May 19, 1924, in Spokane, Washington, the second of seven children born to Erman Edgar and Ruth Wood Coil. He grew up in Spokane and Curlew, Washington enjoying many summer days in the meadows and mountains of Northeast Washington state. He graduated from Republic High School early in 1942 so he could join the Navy and enter World War II. He trained in San Diego, California and Boulder, Colorado before being shipped to the Aleutian Islands in Alaska. He spent over four years on the islands as a radio operator and communications specialist. He was honored to transmit the Japanese terms of surrender to the battleship U.S.N. Missouri in Tokyo harbor in August, 1945.

Frank married Mardella Mae Anderson in Great Falls, Montana on October 12, 1946, and after several years of farming, logging, and mining they moved to Tanana, Alaska to begin a 25-year career with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). His career took him and the family of eight children to Fairbanks, AL; Cheyenne, WY; Spokane, WA; Idaho Falls, ID; and San Francisco, CA. He developed his skills and talents as an air traffic control specialist to the point that he was highly sought after to help develop the national grid of air traffic control systems. His name is on the corner stone of the Mt. Sawtelle radar station in Island Park, Idaho and he assisted in the creation of the regional air traffic control systems in Northern California.

Frank retired in 1974 and moved to Bozeman, MT where he has lived for the past 48 years. He enjoyed camping, hunting, fishing, hiking and riding his mountain bike in the mountains and forests of Southwest Montana for many years. He had his first mountain bikes built at the Owen House Schwinn bike shop in 1975 by adding fat tires and lowered gear ratios to allow him to ride the steep and rugged trails in the mountains around Bozeman. Frank rode his mountain bike to the same secluded meadow in the mountains on the North side of Yellowstone National Park for over 30 years to enjoy the solace and quiet that nature provides.

Frank was the first President of the Bozeman, Montana stake in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in 1979. He also served as Bishop in Spokane, Washington and Sunnyvale, California. He served a term as President of the Gallatin Valley Council of Churches in 1998-99. His tireless devotion to these callings earned him the love and respect of all that he served with. His striving to be a better disciple of Jesus Christ was an example to all who knew him.

He completed three missions with Mardella: first to Australia and Papua New Guinea in 1985-86, second to the island of Palawan in the Philippines in 1990-92, and third to the Billings, Montana temple in 2000- 03.

Frank is survived by six of their eight children: Christine (Glen-Deceased) Bozeman, MT; Michael (Kristin) Bozeman, MT; Colleen (Pat) Seattle, WA; Matthew (Kay Lee) Layton, UT; David (Pam) Eugene, OR; Pennie (David-Deceased) Rexburg, ID; 208 grandchildren and great grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents and brothers Gene and Burt, his two daughters Debbie (Sam Clark) and Susanne (Scott Burnett), son-in-laws Glen Hammar (Christine) and David Bigelow (Pennie), and granddaughter Samantha (Debbie and Sam). The Funeral will be at 11:00am at the LDS Chapel at 2915 Colter Ave, Bozeman, MT, on Saturday, January 29, 2022. The service will be live streamed at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Frank Wilbert Coil, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Ceremony

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Mountain (no DST) time)

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

2915 Colter Avenue, Bozeman, MT 59715


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