Jeffrey Scot Cokely, 61, of Tipton, passed away at his home on Thursday, August 17, 2023.
He was born January 1, 1962, in Kansas City, KS, son of Kenneth Dewayne and Shirley Joan (Hines) Cokely. On December 17, 2022, in Jefferson City, MO, he married Aletha Young Odneal, who survives of the home.
Jeff was a 1985 Kansas University graduate. He graduated from Southwestern Baptist Seminary in 1989 and went on to New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary where he received his doctorate in 1999.
He served his country honorably as a chaplain in the Army Reserves from 1980-1986 at Richards-Gebaur Air Force Base.
He was a member of First United Methodist Church in Jefferson City.
Jeff’s passion was Southern Baptist ministry and served churches in Iola, KS, Hutchinson, KS and Redfield, KS. He also worked at Edward Jones, US Postal Service, Women’s Prison in Topeka, KS, and most recently, at the Tipton Correctional Center, Tipton, MO. He served on the Iola Community Foundation.
After his marriage to Aletha, Jeff gained more children and became an instant grandpa. Jeff was an avid Jayhawk fan and was affectionately called Papa KU. Everything fell into place in his new role, and he loved all his children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
He will be remembered as a prankster, a great storyteller, and a man that tried to reach the unreachable.
In addition to his wife, Aletha, survivors include his parents, Kenneth and Shirley Cokely, of Wellsville, KS; two sons, Cody Cokely (Jamie), and Zachary Cokely, all of Richville, NY; two step-children, Mallory Arnold (Tyler), of Tipton, and Christopher Odneal, of Boonville; two siblings, Cheryl Boyer (Ed), of Baldwin City, KS and Keith Cokely (Hiede), of Tonganoxie, KS; nieces and nephews, Julie Morris (Dustin), Scott Wilhite (Lacey), Catherine Christian, Abigail Cokely and Annabelle Cokely; and four grandchildren, Gentry, Addie, Enzliegh and Chesney Arnold.
Memorial service will be 10:00 am Friday, August 25, 2023 at First United Methodist Church, 201 Monroe Street, Jefferson City with military honors to follow.
The service will be live streamed on the First United Methodist Church Facebook page and available later on the First United Methodist Church’s YouTube channel.
Memorial contributions are suggested to Prison Fellowship Ministries, PO Box 1550, Merrifield, VA 22116 or Prison Fellowship Ministries, c/o Aletha Cokely, 312 Miller Ave, Tipton MO 65081.
Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Heckart Funeral Home and Crematory.