Juanita Mitchell

Miami, Oklahoma – Juanita Mitchell was born October 3rd, 1928 in Baxter Springs, Kansas. She died Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at her home, in Miami, with family and friends nearby. A service will be at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, 225 B Street Northwest, Miami, Oklahoma, 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, August 29, 2018. The Reverend Mary Koppel will preside.
Juanita was born Nellie Juanita Lindenman. Her father, Elwin Bruce Lindenman, was a miner, who died young, in 1936. Her mother, Nellie Lee (Coppenbarger) Lindenman, was determined to keep her family together. Nellie Lee worked hard for many years to support her four children. She operated cafes in Joplin, Baxter, and Carl Junction.
The name Juanita and her nickname “Nita” both come from the song “Juanita,” written in 1853. The song was popular during the Civil War and the late 19th century.
Juanita is survived by two children, Nancy Lee Coiner, of Massachusetts, and Richard Henry Coiner, Jr. (Hank) of Miami; a beloved step-daughter, Marta Strait, of Pennsylvania; one of her brothers, Gene Lindenman, of Kansas City, Kansas; her wonderful dog, a Pomeranian named Bear; and many cousins, nieces and nephews, and close friends. She was close to her cousin, Larry Thomas and his wife, Jill, who live in Baxter Springs, Kansas. She had two other brothers, Billy and Richard, who predeceased her.
For the past few months she has received wonderful care, at home, from Shirley Haslam, Jean Eslick, and Glenda Stoner. The family is grateful to them.
Growing up in Baxter Springs, Juanita remembered working at the movie theater; (the only air-conditioned place in town) swimming at Five Mile Creek; reading the Wonder Woman comic strip in the newspapers; and watching her brother, Gene play baseball, on the Baxter Whiz Kids team with Mickey Mantle.
Juanita attended Baxter Springs Public Schools, the University of Arkansas, and the University of Tulsa, earning a master’s degree in speech therapy. Her thesis was titled “A Comparison of Programmed Therapy and Traditional Therapy for the Correction of Articulation Errors.”
She worked for many years as a teacher and clinic leader at the University of Tulsa.
After World War II she met a young soldier just back from the war. On November 10, 1946, she married Richard Henry Coiner, Sr., of Miami, Oklahoma, at Baxter Springs. Juanita and Richard lived in Joplin, St. Louis, Springfield, and Little Rock. Richard’s last move for the Frisco Railroad was to Tulsa, where they lived from 1962 to 1984. After both retired, they moved to Joplin. Richard died in 1988. Neither Juanita nor Richard grew up in a religious home, but they found the Episcopal Church to be welcoming and friendly and were faithful members of St. Peter’s, Tulsa and St. Philips Joplin. Richard’s ashes are interred at St. Philip’s, and Juanita’s ashes will also be placed there.
A few years after the death of Richard she married Charles Clifford Mitchell, a native of Fort Worth and living at that time in Joplin. They moved to Hunt, Texas, in the beautiful hill country and lived happily there for ten years. After Clifford died, she moved to Miami, across the road from her son.
In Miami, she attended All Saints’ Episcopal Church and was a member of many social organizations. She enjoyed playing golf, painting, gardening, reading, and watching sports, especially baseball.


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