Helen Oeland Coker died on March 21, 2023. She was born on February 21, 1938 in Spartanburg, SC, the daughter of James Moore Oeland and Martha Alexander Oeland. Her parents raised Helen and her sisters in the South Carolina upstate until the family moved to Darlington when she was a teenager. She graduated from St. John’s High School and then Converse College. After college she taught at Ashley Hall in Charleston. Later, when she was a single mother, she continued her studies at Francis Marion University. There she also worked as the first “Job Locator,” helping other students find part-time jobs to pay for college. While studying accounting at FMU, she was introduced to the love of her life, Dr. Morgan B. Coker. She was an active member and leader of St. John’s Church and then later at Effingham Presbyterian Church. She was a member and a leader of the Pee Dee Chapter of the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America, as well as several other social and service organizations in Florence. She served with the House of Hope, the East Florence Mission, and Just for Women Ministries, as well as others. What mattered to her the most was her faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and her family.
She is predeceased by her parents, by her beloved husband Dr. Morgan Coker, and her sister, Mary (Tom) Oeland Alexander. She is survived by her children Rev. Wey (Anne) Camp, Oeland Camp, and Rev. Helen Harrison (Clay) Ham. She is also survived by eight grandchildren: Edmond Camp, Evan (Winter) Camp, Jay (Kristen) Camp, Chloe Camp, Savanna Camp, Nathan Camp, Julia Morgan Camp, and Ayla Camp. She is also survived by one step-granddaughter Emily (Greg) Adams and two great-grandsons, Sam and Charlie. She is also survived by her sisters Jimsie (Carroll) Oeland Hart and Nora (Randy) Oeland Rushton, and several cherished nieces and nephews. Survivors also include her in-laws Steve (Joanne) Coker, Luke (Gloria) Coker, Rebecca (Charles) Thies, and Gertrude Hall.
A private committal will be held at the Florence National Cemetery. A Celebration of Life will be held at Effingham Presbyterian Church on Saturday April 1, 2023 at 11 am. Visitation will be held at 10 am in the Family Life Center. In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to Effingham Presbyterian Church, the Dr. Morgan B. Coker scholarship at Francis Marion University, or the House of Hope in Florence. Cain Calcutt Funeral Home is honored to serve the Coker family.
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