Paul Albert Coles passed away on June 23, 2023, at age 87, of heart failure. He had been a long-time resident of Corsicana, Texas, and of Dallas, Texas before that. Coles was born on June 20, 1936, in Carmi, Illinois, the second child and only son of
Henry Paul Coles and Ethel Frances Coles (nee Etienne). He had a happy childhood in small-town America, working as a paperboy during the week, and serving as an altar boy in the Catholic Church on Sundays. He graduated from City High in Carmi, and soon joined the Navy, following the path of his father, who served in the Navy during WWI. Coles served in the military during the Korean War, and was honorably discharged. He leveraged his education in the military to obtain a career in the aerospace industry, eventually working on the foremost projects of the 20 th century, including the Apollo Space Missions, which he supported while living in Huntsville, Alabama. Coles married and raised three sons in Arlington, Texas, serving as a leader in the Boy Scouts, as he encouraged his sons in Scouts, two of which became Eagle Scouts. In retirement, Coles moved to Corsicana, Texas, to be near family. He kept busy researching his family tree, as well as visiting with family and friends. He will be missed by the many people whose lives he touched.
Coles is preceded in death by his parents, Henry Paul and Ethel Coles, both of Carmi, Illinois; and a sister and brother-in-law, Patricia Ann Drone and Carl Drone, of Harrisburg, Illinois. He is survived by three sons: Jason, of Orange County, California; Matthew (and Misty), of Corsicana, Texas; and Andrew (and Shannon), of Dallas, Texas; three grandchildren: Maci, Landon, and Carter; as well as five nephews and nieces, Chris, Frances, Stephen, Lucy, and Sarah.
Coles will be cremated, and a small graveside service will be held for the family.
Donations and tributes can be sent to the American Heart Association, to promote heart health so that all can live happier, healthier, and longer lives. Campbell Funeral Home in Carmi is assisting the family with arrangements.