May 6, 2013

Sgt. Shelley Carl Coffey, US Army

Photo by Brent Coffey
Shelley Carl Coffey
Military Marker
Shelley Carl Coffey, born c1923 in Knox Co., TN to Luther Lafayette and Jean Ruth Sands Coffey.  He enlisted in the US Army in Georgia at Fort Oglethorpe on Nov. 9, 1942 and died on Apr. 15, 1945 while serving in Europe with Co. 4, 59th Armored Infantry Battalion, 13th Armored Division.  He was buried with other Americans who lost their life during the liberation of The Netherlands at the Netherlands American Cemetery in the village of Margraten, just outside of Maastricht in the southern part of that country.

by Brent Coffey
Netherlands American Cemetery, Margraten, The Netherlands
Shelley was the third of five children born to Luther and Jean. Edith was the eldest, born c1916.  She married Harold B. Jordan on Feb. 14, 1938 in Anderson Co., TN. They resided near her parents in Knoxville, Knox Co., TN at the Apr., 1940 census and had no children at the time.

Marjorie followed Edith on Jul. 25, 1919 in Knox Co.  She married Woodrow O. Chambers in Anderson Co. on Oct. 23, 1937.  In 1940 they lived with Woodrow's parents in Knoxville. Later, they had at least two children; Brenda and Gail.

The fourth child born was Nola Pearl, born Jan. 5, 1925 in Knox Co., died Sep. 10, 1981. She is said to have married Robert Hensley but I have not found a marriage record. They had at least one child, a son, Robert, Jr.

Their fifth child was Etta, born Mar. 16, 1927. She was still living with her parents in 1940 and I do not know who she married.

Shelley then was the only son,  and wasn't married when he was killed, thus leaving Luther's line daughtered out.

The photos were provided by Brent Coffey and remain his property. Do not copy without permission.


  1. This memorial was beautiful! I would highly recommend visiting this site if you ever get a chance. I went on the Dutch day of Remembrance and the place was packed by the Dutch people putting flowers out. Very inspiring!

    Lately, I've been in Europe a few times each year-typically France and England. If anyone knows of a Coffey landmark I should visit let me know and I'll be bring back pictures if can get to the site.

  2. Brent, somewhere in my collection of old photos is the exact one of the entrance to the cemetery. The only difference is that - as I recall - a small boy playing on the steps.


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